A principal and cafeteria worker in Ohio have been terminated after surveillance video confirms a 9-year-old Black girl’s account of being made to eat food out of the trash can that she had thrown away.
The school district in Lorain, 30 miles west of Cleveland, finally released the video after the investigation was launched in December 2021, according to WKYC. The episode in question took place in November at Palm Elementary School.
The unidentified parents have filed a lawsuit against Lorain City School District for the infliction of emotional harm and trauma to the child in such an avoidable situation. The child simply did not want to eat the waffles she’d been given and threw them away.
“What we see is a student finish with her lunch … again, a student finish with her lunch and she goes to throw the lunch away like hundreds and thousands of students across the country do every day,” Jared Klebanow said, according to Fox 8.
“We see in the video, this monitor, the named defendant, go ahead and grab the waffle out of the garbage and she appears to instruct the student to go get a paper towel, [and] go back to her seat.”
Klebanow then breaks down what took place next.
“She places the waffle at the table and then for a matter of minutes is talking with her, instructing her, as we know from the victim’s standpoint, that she needs to eat this waffle that was in the garbage and the monitor goes as far as to sit right next to her, as is alleged in the complaint, and intimidate her into doing so,” said Klebanow.
Lorain City School’s findings stated that the student threw away a packaged food item. The cafeteria monitor retrieved it out of the garbage can, wiped it off, then gave it back to the girl. Nevertheless, the district denounced the monitor’s egregious actions.
The principal, who was aware of the incident, was also fired for taking no action.