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Idaho Teacher Summer Larsen Keeps Job After Letting Kids Draw on the Faces of Underperforming Students
An Idaho teacher who let fourth graders draw on the faces of their six classmates after failing to meet their reading goal that month gets to keep her job.
Summer Larsen will return to teach at her school in Declo next semester while an investigation into her behavior by the Cassia County School District is still pending, according to District Public Information Officer Debbie Critchfield.
Cassia County school board member, Steve Lynch, told the Times-News that Larsen’s contract was renewed based on the teacher evaluations given by principal Rebecca Hunsaker.
“The evaluation recommended rehiring Larsen," Lynch said. "The evaluation was done appropriately and professionally and supported that decision.”
Hunsaker reportedly retired at the end of this school year.
“Based on those evaluations, we make our decisions to rehire or not,” Lynch said.
"The class had a discussed their accelerated reading goals and trying to put together some incentives for students to achieve those goals," said Cassia County School District Superintendent Gaylen Smyer. "One of those incentives was who met their goals would be able to paint the face of those kids who didn't meet their goals or those children who didn't meet their goals could also miss recess.”
Larsen had 21 students in her fourth grade class. Nine of her students did not meet the required reading goal. The students could chose a series of punishments. Six kids chose to let other kids draw on their faces and also miss three recess periods.
"Not only was my son punished with bullying, but the other students were rewarded with bullying," said a parent to KMTV in November 2012. "They're being taught that bullying is OK and there is nothing wrong with this.”