A school in El Paso, Texas is in hot water after parents brought to their attention a homework assignment some fourth grade students were sent home with.
According to reports, some fourth-graders at Pasodale Elementary School were sent home with a reading assignment featuring questions with life situations that are far too intense for young children to comprehend. One of the questions, shown below, shocked some parents the most.
Ruby sat on the bed she shared with her husband holding a hairclip. There was something mysterious and powerful about the cheaply manufactured neon clip that she was fondling suspiciously. She didn’t recognize the hairclip. It was too big to be their daughter’s, and Ruby was sure that it wasn’t hers. She hadn’t had friends over in weeks but there was this hairclip, little and green with a few long black hair strands caught in it. Ruby ran her fingers through her own blonde hair. She had just been vacuuming when she noticed this small, bright green object under the bed. Now their life would never be the same. She would wait here until Mike returned home.
1.Why is Ruby so affected by the hairclip?
2.How has the hairclip affected Ruby’s relationship?
When Ursula Silverstein, an upset parent of a 10-year-old student, saw the assignment, she became infuriated.
"I think life situations like that should be taught at home, not at school," said Silverstein to KTSM.
Another parent, Nancy Desantiago, echoed Silverstein’s sentiments.
"Why would the teacher give them that type of assignment, you know?” asked Desantiago. “It could be something about nature or planets. But something about that, it's very inappropriate.”
Yselta Independent School District issued a statement following the incident, ackonwleding that the assignment was inappropriate and vowing to take care of the situation.
"YISD administration is aware of an unacceptable assignment that was given to a 4th- grade class at Pasodale Elementary,” said the school in the statement. “We apologize to the students and the parents who received this assignment. Campus administration has addressed the issue with the teacher, and has taken decisive measures to assure that future assignments are aligned to the curriculum and are of the highest instructional caliber.”
A Midwest mother of five decided to write a thank-you letter to a stranger that paid her grocery bill, and now, that letter is teaching people everywhere why it is so important to pay it forward.
Andrea Gardner frequently writes on her blog “True Stories Of A Midwest Yankee” about the daily struggles her family has faced and continues to face after her husband was laid off from his job of 17 years. Gardner recently decided to write a letter to the unknown Samaritan who paid her $17.38 grocery bill when she was faced with a tough situation at the grocery store with her children.
“You don’t know me,” starts Gardner in her blog post. “You have no clue what my life has been like since October 1, 2013. You have no clue that my family has gone through the wringer. You have no clue that we have faced unbelievable hardship. You have no clue we have been humiliated, humbled, destitute. You have no clue I have cried more days than not; that I fight against bitterness taking control of my heart. You have no clue that my husband’s pride was shattered. You have no clue my kids have had the worries of an adult on their shoulders. You have no clue their innocence was snatched from them for no good reason. You know none of this.”
“What you do know is I tried to buy my kids some food and that the EBT machine was down so I couldn’t buy that food,” continued Gardner. “I didn’t have any cash or my debit card with me. I only had my SNAP card. All you heard was me saying ‘No, don’t hold it for me. My kids are hungry now and I have no other way of paying for this.’ You didn’t judge me. You didn’t snarl, ‘Maybe you should have less kids.’ You didn’t say, ‘Well, get a job and learn to support yourself.’ You didn’t look away in embarrassment or shame for me. You didn’t make any assumptions at all. What you did was you paid that $17.38 grocery bill for us. You gave my kids bananas, yogurt, apple juice, cheese sticks, and a peach ice tea for me; a rare treat and splurge. You let me hug you and promise through my tears that I WILL pay this forward. I WILL pay someone’s grocery bill for them. That $17.38 may not have been a lot for you, but it was priceless to us.”
Since posting the heartwarming letter, Gardner has received support from people all over. Her blog post has over 700 comments since being posted on March 19, it was catapulted to viral status when the Huffington Post shared it, and random people have even offered her and her husband jobs. On April 3, Gardner responded to those offering help via her Facebook page.
“I am learning. Always learning. I am so humbled that people are offering to help us,” wrote Gardner. “I do not want people to think I expect anything because I don't. So if you offered to help and I declined I apologize. I need to realize I struggle with pride. Please be patient with me. I am so thankful for all of you.”
This story proves that helping another person without expecting anything in return always pays off in the long run.
A mother in Orlando, Florida is sitting in jail after authorities discovered that she and her five children were living in filth. Now, family members say they had no idea that the children were living in those conditions and are attempting to gain custody.
Yolander Lasane, 45, has been charged with five counts of child neglect after her children were found to be living in an unsafe environment. Police say that the house contained urine-soaked mattresses, rooms filled with trashed, feces splattered all over the walls, and a bug infestation.
Authorities were called to the home after Lasane’s 17-year-old daughter ran away and wasn’t seen there for over three weeks. During that time, Lasane failed to contact the authorities, so when a neighbor finally did, they were horrified to discover the conditions the family was living in.
"The severe medical and overall neglect was horrendous," wrote an officer in the police report.
According to reports, one of the children was barely able to eat because his teeth were rotting so badly. The toilets, showers, and sinks were all out of service, and there was barely any running water at all, so it was clear that the children had not bathed in some time.
Fox 35 News in Orlando first reported on the story, and after seeing it on social media, some relatives reached out to offer their help. They claim they were completely unaware that the children were living in such terrible conditions.
“It’s upsetting to see because we didn’t know,” said John Lasane, who currently lives in Georgia. “Like I said, we didn’t know the situation had gotten that bad.”
The children are currently living with a relative while the state attempts to find permanent homes for them. Meanwhile, Yolander Lasane is sitting in jail, facing five child neglect charges.
Disturbing details are starting to emerge following the March 14 arrest of two California women accused of starving three children and chaining one to the floor.
Authorities arrived at the Salinas, California home to investigate accusations of child neglect, and once they got there, they were horrified to discover a three-year-old boy, a five-year-old boy, and an eight-year-old girl all being starved. The young girl was shackled to keep her from eating.
"The little girl was from time-to-time chained to the walls of the house and denied food," said Monterey County Sheriff Scott Miller. "She was extremely emaciated. She's been described as someone who looks like she's been living in a concentration camp." Miller added that all three children had “hardly eaten for months” and that the girl was the “major target” of the abuse.
Eraca Dawn Craig, 31, and Christian Jessica Deanda, 44, were arrested and charged with multiple counts of felony child cruelty, false imprisonment, and other related charges. The women are reportedly domestic partners, and one of them is the biological mother of the three-year-old boy. The five-year-old boy and the girl were both adopted.
Both Craig and Deanda pleaded not guilty to the charges against them, and neither reportedly have a criminal record. Authorities say the two women were attempting to leave the area right before they were arrested.
Miller says that this case is one of the worst he has ever seen.
"When you've got over 30 years in the business, you've seen way too many of these types of things before," said Miller. "But this is, in terms of child abuse and neglect, this is toward the top."
"The fact that it appears [the girl] was actually chained to the wall to keep her from eating, those are the kinds of facts that tear at you," continued Miller. "That's the kind of thing that differentiates this from most other types of abuse cases."
Craig and Deanda are both scheduled to appear in court on March 28, but in the meantime, they are being held on $50,000 bail at Monterey County Jail.
A 2-year-old Arizona boy who had mastered FaceTime used his tech-savvy skills to save his Mom after she was badly hurt in a dog attack.
Laura Toone said she was out walking her dogs when a foster dog she was caring for attacked one of her own pets. She struggled desperately to get the dog to release his hold but, instead, he turned on her and “took a big bite that almost took her finger clean off,” she told ABC News.
She said she begged her 4-year-old daughters to call 911, but they were afraid to even touch the phone because it was covered with their mother’s blood.
Laura told reporters that she was just about to pass out and knew she needed help right away. She then saw her son, 2-year-old Bentley, rushing to rescue his Mom.
“Here comes my son from the kitchen bringing me our dish towel and proceeded to call my friend on FaceTime," Laura said.
Bentley is always on her iPhone, Laura told ABC News, and he is known for making prank FaceTime calls. Usually many of Laura's friends like Connie Guerrero ignore the ring. But that day was different.
"Something inside of me just told me that I needed to answer this FaceTime," Connie said. "All I could see was his little forehead and I said 'Hi, Bentley,' and it was quiet for a little bit and then I hear Laura screaming," she said.
Those screams spurred Connie to call 911 immediately. When the firefighters got there, Bentley was at the door to let them in.
Laura Toone says she is so thankful for her little hero.
11Mother Arrested After Her Abandoned Young Children Ask Police For Ride To School In Freezing Cold (Video)
Three children left alone in the freezing cold New Hampshire outdoors walked into a police station one morning and asked for a ride to school. Now, their 26-year-old mom is facing serious charges.
Katarina Short has officially lost custody of her children, aged 1, 4, and 5, and is facing three counts of child endangerment.
Surveillance video captured the children walking into the police station after attempting to make their own way to school early Tuesday morning. The children knew their mother wasn’t home, and the oldest child wanted to go to school, so he decided to take his siblings to the police station to ask for help when it got too cold out.
“The reason why he had left the house is after discovering their mother wasn’t there his greatest desire was to get to school,” Farmington Police Chief Kevin Willey said. “He was able to get their coats on. The one-year-old she had her boots on but unfortunately he had put them on the wrong feet.”
Short was arrested immediately after police tracked her down, and according to her claims, the children were supposed to be left in the care of a babysitter while she went to the store. After investigating her claims, however, police now say that a babysitter was never called.
According to reports, the children were taken to the hospital to be examined, and all are said to be healthy. The children are now in foster care while their mother is out on bail, awaiting her arraignment on March 18.
Three family members in Burlington, Iowa are in jail on various child sex abuse related charges.
It all started when 20-year-old Andrew Keith Wells walked into the police station and told officers that he had molested several children. He also admitted to having hundreds on items of child pornography.
On Monday, officers began an investigation at Wells’ home. Police discovered that 10 home-schooled children were living there, and the parents, Brian Wells, 49, and Janelle Wells, 39, were arrested. Both have been charged because they knew about the sexual abuse but did nothing to stop it.
While District Associate Judge Mark Kruse sought a higher bond for Andrew Wells because he believed the young man was a danger to the community, Wells himself asked for a lower bond.
"I would say if I was released, I would never harm another child in my life," said Wells to Judge Kruse.
Despite the plea, Judge Kruse set the bond at $50,000 per charge, totally $100,000. Mr. and Mrs. Wells each had their bonds set at $40,000 cash.
In addition to finding evidence that Wells had been molesting his siblings, police also discovered evidence of child pornography.
"Detectives located several hundred photos and numerous videos of obvious juvenile males and females, ranging in age from 5 to 15...engaging in explicit sexual acts with other children, as well as adult males," said court records.
Andrew Wells is set to appear in court on March 6, and it has not yet been announced when his parents are scheduled.
A 4-year-old boy was almost kidnapped by a man while walking home from school one day, but thanks to his smart 6-year-old brother and a Good Samaritan, the youngster’s life was saved.
Grady and his brother Brendan were walking home from school with their nanny when a man approached them saying he was in the CIA. Suddenly, the man punched the nanny in the face, grabbed Grady, and started to run off with him. Brendan ran home to tell his father that Grady had been taken.
“He ran home and said, ‘Someone stole Grady,’” said the boys’ father Tom O’Brien. “All those thoughts were going through my head that I didn’t want to think about, like never seeing my son again.”
While Tom was rushing to save his son, a man who was dining at a restaurant close by heard Brendan screaming, so he went after the man who had Grady. The Good Samaritan, Jose Delgado, caught up with the kidnapper and got Grady out of his arms.
Now, 33-year-old Andron Gazarov has been arrested and charged with kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury, and indecent exposure.
Tom O’Brien was able to meet Jose Delgado to thank him in person for saving his son’s life, and the father even gave a check to Delgado to go towards the hero’s own 4-year-old sick daughter’s medical expenses.
11Kindergarten Teacher Finds Two Students Naked In The Bathroom, Reports It To The Principal, and Could Now Lose Her Job
A New Jersey kindergarten teacher could be fired from her job after discovering two of her young students naked in the bathroom together and immediately reporting it to the principal. Now, fellow teachers and residents in Mullica Township are trying to stop that from happening.
On September 30 of last year, Kelly Mascio, a teacher of 15 years at the Mullica Township school, discovered two 5-year-old students, a boy and a girl, in the bathroom naked together, announcing that they were “having sex.” Mascio followed protocol and immediately reported it to the principal.
Following the incident, Mascio was suspended without pay, and now, Superintendent Brenda Harring-Marro announced that she has filed tenure charges against the teacher, despite the fact that a police investigation early on said that there was no wrongdoing.
“Our main concern is that the administration has completely forgone all traditional disciplinary avenues available in handling the incident,” said Barbara Rheault, Mullica Township Education Association President. “The administration has selected a disciplinary route that has resulted in enormous emotional and professional turmoil, and has strained the confidence and trust of school staff, parents and community members.”
Parents and fellow teachers are outraged that Mascio has been fired and say that she was doing exactly what she thought was the right thing to do. The board of education recently met to decide whether or not they could fire Mascio, and amazingly, around 200 allies showed up to throw their support behind Mascio.
Social media also blew up after The Press of Atlantic City first reported the story.
“Did I miss something?” asked one Facebook user. “She finds a naked girl and boy in the bathroom who say they are having sex, she tells the principal and now she may lose her job???? What part am I misunderstanding because that makes no sense.”
Other users on Facebook questioned why the parents of the children weren’t being investigated.
“Geez. I wonder what these parents are letting their children see at home,” said one commenter. “Also could be a sign of sexual abuse. Poor teacher.”
Mascio hasn’t commented on the incident and there have been no updates as to whether or not she will actually be fired.
A Kansas lawmaker is proposing a controversial bill that would allow parents, teachers, and caregivers to spank children hard enough to leave marks.
Democratic House member Gail Finney says that the new bill would allow for an adult to give up to 10 strikes of the hand and would make it OK if that spanking left marks or bruises on the child. In addition, the bill would allow for parents to give others permission to spank their children. The current Kansas law allows for spanking, but does not allow for it to leave a mark on a child. The new bill would expand on this law.
"This bill basically defines a spanking along with necessary reasonable physical restraint that goes with discipline, all of which has always been legal," said McPherson Deputy County Attorney Britt Colle, who proposed the bill to Finney. "This bill clarifies what parents can and cannot do. By defining what is legal, it also defines what is not."
While there are many who support this bill, some experts say that spanking isn’t as effective as it used to be.
"20, 30 years ago, we didn't sit in car seats, and we do now, said pediatric nurse practitioner and child abuse specialist Amy Terreros to KCTV. “So maybe they did spank or were spanked as a child, but now we have research that shows it is less effective than time out. It tends to lead to more aggressive behavior with a child.”
Fellow lawmakers say they aren’t sure that the House committee would even consider this bill, so the chance of it ever being made law is up in the air.