Students back Michigan band teacher suspended for duct-taping girl’s ankles to chair

By Travis Gettys
Monday, March 31, 2014 8:33 EDT
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Irish girl playing clarinet Shutterstock
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Students want to see a southeast Michigan teacher who was suspended for duct-taping a girl’s ankles to a chair returned to the classroom.

The Jefferson High School band teacher, identified by parents as Brian Sullivan, was placed on paid administrative leave after he was accused of taping the girl’s ankles to encourage proper posture required when playing an instrument, reported the Monroe News.

“If it was my daughter, I’d be upset, of course,” said Debbie Barron, whose daughter takes the teacher’s band class. “You just can’t do that kind of stuff to kids anymore. But I don’t think he should lose his job.”

Students want Sullivan returned to the classroom so he can accompany them next month on the band’s planned trip to Florida.

The school’s superintendent said the teacher will remain on paid administrative leave and is barred from contact with students while the complaint about his “corrective measures” is investigated.

But parents said Sullivan’s suspension could jeopardize the class trip, which is scheduled to begin April 9, to perform at Disney World.

“The kids have worked very hard for this trip all year,” said Barron, a band booster. “The kids have earned this.”

She said Sullivan stresses proper posture while playing, and Barron said the teacher used tape to emphasize his directions to one girl who would not keep both feet on the floor.

Barron said the girl was wearing jeans and boots when her ankles were taped to the chair legs, but she was upset and another student complained to school officials.

Some student have passed out fliers at the school in support of the suspended teacher, saying the incident was blown out of proportion.

[Image: Irish girl playing clarinet via Shutterstock]

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