Educator sanctioned for unreported incident - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Educator sanctioned for unreported incident

Superintendent Everett Superintendent Everett
Det. Knifer Det. Knifer
THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - An assistant principal at a Thomasville middle school is charged with failing to report an incident of a student inappropriately touching two other kids. School officials say they're taking steps to make sure employees handle allegations of abuse the right way in the future.

It hasn't been an easy week for students at McIntyre Park Middle School after their assistant principal was arrested.

"This was a week that we did not want to be so disruptive with them as far as giving them anything that would be a distraction and have them anxious about anything other than testing," said Superintendent Sabrina Everett.

Thomasville Police charged Iesha Dawson with failure to report suspected abuse, after a seventh grader was accused of inappropriately touching two other students last Friday. Police say once Dawson found out, she was bound by law to report it to authorities.

"She basically stated that she made no attempt to notify her superiors or law enforcement, which she is required to do," said Everett.

Superintendent Everett insists this is not common, and it is something school leaders take seriously. "This is an isolated incident. This is nothing that goes on routinely in our schools. And I don't want an isolated incident to characterize us as being numb to it or non-responsive to it."

Detective Toby Knifer says incidents that go unreported are concerning because victims may feel like their superiors don't care.

"This is a big concern to me. And the reason being is, if it's not reported, an individual or child may feel that they weren't heard. That whatever happened to them fell on deaf ears," he said.

Dawson has been reassigned to a job in the central office as the school system decides her future. There will be a teacher conference Monday to make sure all faculty members fully understand the proper protocol when handling situations like this.

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