SLIDELL, La. (WGNO) — A mother wants to know why her teenage daughter was restrained at Slidell High School and passed out.
On Oct. 19, Susan Wheeler’s daughter, 15-year-old Carleigh Wheeler, was taken to a hospital in an ambulance and was later suspended.
Wheeler addressed the St. Tammany Parish School Board during its Nov. 9 meeting, saying, “Why are my questions still unanswered, and why is my child not safe at your schools?”
Wheeler says Carleigh, a Slidell High freshman, was restrained by school staff following a verbal altercation with another female student and that she lost consciousness a few times during the incident.
Wheeler said, “While she was in the ER, they told my husband that it was more than likely her anxiety had gotten so high that she had passed out.”
Wheeler and her daughter returned to Slidell High the following day to meet with the principal.
Wheeler says they were handed a behavior report, stating Carleigh would be suspended for five days for causing a disturbance and instigating a fight with a female student. The fight was later noted in the report as a verbal altercation.
The mother says she demanded to see video of the incident but was told it would take two weeks for redaction.
Wheeler says she saw an un-redacted version Tuesday, Nov. 15, almost four weeks later.
“It literally started, and Carleigh is already on the ground,” Wheeler explained. “Her knees are facing the camera. You can’t really see how she’s being restrained other than there’s an adult male, at least twice her size, standing over her.”
Wheeler also says Carleigh has had a 504 plan with the St. Tammany Parish School system since she was in the first grade.
Section 504 requires that students with disabilities receive accommodations that ensure their academic success.
“I want to make sure that all the principals and staff in the administrative portion and the disciplinary portion of the school are aware of what parents, like me, who have kids with a 504 plan, what they’re entitled to have when incidents happen,” Wheeler said.
The mother is hopeful she will receive more clarity when meeting with Slidell High’s principal and 504 plan coordinator on Friday.
According to a spokeswoman for the St. Tammany Parish School System, under state law, they are prohibited from discussing the disciplinary action of any student.
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