YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - An Ohio teacher was fired this week after she was photographed dragging a young student by the arm down a school hallway.
The teacher, who worked with children at a Youngstown school in the Mahoning County Head Start program, was employed by Alta Care Group, a non-profit company that services the early education program.
"I want to make sure it is clear that the individual who was terminated does not reflect the values of the dedicated and skilled professionals at Alta Head Start," Alta's CEO Joe Shorokey said Wednesday in a statement.
"These fine teachers and aides should not be unfairly portrayed as anything less because of the person who was terminated. "
'We took action immediately'
Neither the student nor the teacher have been identified. Shorokey was unable to comment on the student's age, but confirmed the student was in the Head Start program. Government-funded Head Start provides education to students between the ages of 3 and 5.
"We took this matter very seriously," Shorokey said Thursday. "We took action immediately. We apologized to the parents, as well as to the community."
Alta provides services in eight classrooms across the district, according to Youngstown City Schools spokeswoman Denise Dick. Each of those classrooms is also staffed by a Youngstown teacher and a district educational aide, she said.
The picture of the incident was taken by a Youngstown City Schools teacher working in an administrative capacity, said Dick. The spokeswoman said the incident had been reported to Mahoning County Children's Services by the Youngstown school district.