School board to decide future of Sebastian River HS teacher caught on camera fighting student

Posted at 6:29 AM, Feb 23, 2017
and last updated 2019-03-26 06:38:48-04

School board leaders will decide Thursday night whether the Indian River County teacher seen on video fighting a student will get his job back.

A judge recommended the school district exonerate Coach Joe Nathaniel.

The Indian River County school board has a special meeting with only one thing on the agenda: whether to clear Nathaniel of any wrong doing, or fire him.


This all centers around a fight in November 2015. Video captured Nathaniel and a student at Sebastian River High School fighting in a classroom.

The school district pulled Nathaniel out of the classroom following this incident.

This year, an administrative law judge reviewing the case sided with Nathaniel. The judge said Nathaniel was standing tall to a “violently aggressive student.”

NewsChannel 5 spoke with Nathaniel after the judge issued his ruling.

“We need to be supported by our superiors and that's not happening. We're not supported in the classroom when we have problematic kids,” he said.

The Indian River County school board meets at 6:30 Thursday night in Vero Beach to decide whether to follow the judge’s recommendation or fire Nathaniel.