Salinas preschool teacher accused of abusing children in class

Salinas preschool teacher accused of abusing children in class

SALINAS, Calif. - UPDATE 4/5: A dozen parents showed up at a school board meeting Thursday night to express their concerns and ask for this teacher to be fired.

They plan to protest on Monday at the district.

ORIGINAL: A preschool teacher is being accused of hurting children in the classroom and parents are outraged.

Parents called and emailed KION about the alleged abuse at Little Bear Creek Preschool in the Santa Rita Union School District.

4-year-old Camilla’s parents kept her home from preschool Wednesday because of what’s happening at her school in north Salinas.

Camilla said, "She blow a whistle in my ear and I covered my ear with my hands."

Two parents have come forward to say their kids had whistles blown into their ears.

One of the moms, Maria Corona said, "'Oh mom, she whistles like this' and he covers his ears and says 'It hurts me mom, it hurts me and I don't like it.' That's how we started noticing something was wrong in that room."

Others alleged having their ears pulled.

Camilla’s mother learned from another parent her daughter's arm was pulled aggressively.

"This parent came up to me and told me what she saw, what she witnessed, when my daughter was pulled down from the arm,” said Camilla’s mother.

One incident has been reported to law enforcement.

The Monterey County Sheriff's Office confirmed a deputy responded to the school this week because a 4- year-old complained his teacher "tugged his ears."

Parents also alleged another preschool teacher was fired for defending the students.

The school district met with parents Wednesday morning.

The superintendent told KION "We have developed a safe academic preschool for eligible students in the Santa Rita district. When situations arise, we treat them appropriately and take things seriously and follow through."

Because of personnel issues, she could not say if this teacher is still working or has been put on administrative leave.

In any event, parents said they're not bringing their kids back until something changes.

"What these kids are going through is more emotional and psychological,” said Corona.

The Santa Rita Union School District board of directors is meeting Thursday night for its regularly scheduled meeting. Parents told KION they’re going to be there demanding answers.

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