Teacher fired after arrest on child abuse charges

Confrontation with two students at Gaines Academy
Posted at 7:35 PM, Feb 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-27 19:35:42-05

According to an arrest affidavit released Monday, teacher Leah Merrique Germain noticed a student sliding down a stairwell banister Friday afternoon.

As the investigating deputy watched security camera video of the incident, he wrote that he sees the teacher confront that student, and push him three times back onto the stairs, eventually holding him down with her arms and hand.

While she was on top of the student, the deputy notes a second student comes into the stairwell and uses his cellphone to record the incident.

The teacher lets go of the first student, approaches the second student, and eventually takes him down to the floor, placing her right knee onto his chest.

A struggle continued before another teacher and the school resource deputy arrive on the scene.

“She probably lost her temper.  You can tell these kids until they’re blue in the face to behave," said parent Mary Cowger.

The school district released a statement that said in part “The safety and security of our students is foremost in our mission.  As such, these standards are treated with the highest level of priority and concern.”

Germain was a fifth grade teacher with a total of five years of employment with the district.  A district spokeswoman says there are no plans to realize the security video.