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Lawsuit filed over paddling incident

Posted: Wednesday, July 20, 2011 4:13 pm | Updated: 3:57 pm, Fri Jun 1, 2012.

The paddling of a 13-year-old child at Plainview School last year has led to a federal lawsuit seeking unspecified damages from individual members of the DeKalb County Board of Education, superintendent Charles Warren, principal Ronald Bell and Stuart Mitchell, the teacher who allegedly administered the paddling.

The five-count suit alleges violation of the student's due process, negligent training and supervision of a school system employee, wantonness and assault and battery on the part of Mitchell. It also claims the student's 14th Amendment rights to due process were violated.

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  • sneert posted at 6:39 pm on Wed, Jul 27, 2011.

    sneert Posts: 610

    Things are going to be "fubar"?

    Well,alrighty, then!

    Actually,they should be punished at school,and then at home,like it used to be.Those were the days we didnt need policemen at school.

  • intelman33 posted at 7:32 pm on Tue, Jul 26, 2011.

    intelman33 Posts: 1

    Xbear, no offense, but it is the Alabamaians like you that give other Alabamaians a bad rep. At first glance, you appear uneducated and uncultured. Your spelling is atrocious and through SEVERAL posts you failed to pick up on your misuse of "their".
    Thank you for perpetuating the stereotype. In regards to the paddling, in my experience, any time Ronald Bell is involved in any sort of school administration, things are going to be fubar and kids are going to have horrible experiences in his schools. That being said, I do not doubt for one second this happened, however I do doubt the mothers motives for bringing it to light. Failing grades should never be an excuse to paddle someone and if it were it is definitely a punishment that should be given by the parents and not the teacher. This all could have been avoided had it been handled administratively.

  • sneert posted at 7:50 am on Mon, Jul 25, 2011.

    sneert Posts: 610

    AMEN,xbear.I bet they sue McDonalds one day 'cause they run out of chicken chunks.I wouldnt doubt if they get in front of the security camera's somewhere and fall down on purpose.Then, they'll sue them.[thumbdown]

  • xbear posted at 12:26 am on Sun, Jul 24, 2011.

    xbear Posts: 4

    I feel bad for whoever grew up on SAND MOUNTAIN and doesnt believe in making their kids mind and letting them run all over them. gives us alabamians a bad rep and makes up look like pansys.

  • SMILE posted at 11:41 am on Sat, Jul 23, 2011.

    SMILE Posts: 6


  • Happy2BHere posted at 9:52 am on Sat, Jul 23, 2011.

    Happy2BHere Posts: 15

    Prediction: This will never go to court. There'll be a pay-off. Looking at the Board policy regarding paddlling(its online under Dekalb County Schools, if anyone else is interested) it appears that Mr. Mitchell did not follow the guidelines and if he did not, then there's no chance of winning at court. and a loss with a jury deciding the amount of the award could run into millions. They'll pay this off before it ever goes to court.

  • SweetTea78 posted at 11:08 pm on Fri, Jul 22, 2011.

    SweetTea78 Posts: 21


    Why on God's green Earth would I ever want to meet you...


  • SMILE posted at 11:23 am on Fri, Jul 22, 2011.

    SMILE Posts: 6

    SweetTea78 first of all I am not on anything, and secondly my children DO NOT or HAVE NOT ever ran over me. And just because I dont as you say BUST their butts when they misbehave doesnt mean they are going to either. I grew up being BEATEN as a child and all the way until I was a teenager and could stand up for myself, therefore I choose not to use corporal punishment with my children for that reason. And until you have been where I have dont you ever judge me for how I choose to handle my children. And as for my children being well behaved and well mannered, they are and quite frankly thats all you need to know. But I dont have to hide behind a screen name so if you'd like to meet me and my children by all means just ASK!!!!!!!

  • ANAKIN posted at 5:39 am on Fri, Jul 22, 2011.

    ANAKIN Posts: 18

    Because children are different from one another, not all respond to the same type of motivation. My son is afraid of getting whipped, though my daughter could care less. I have to use different means of discipline for each. They're both extremely well behaved and well- mannered, but they're just little people right now. They have to be taught, and not all kids learn the same way. Take the time to get to know the child and find what motivates them to listen and follow instructions. Some may need more motivation than others. For what it's worth.

  • SweetTea78 posted at 12:58 am on Fri, Jul 22, 2011.

    SweetTea78 Posts: 21

    Yea XBear needs a High 5...good post. Smile on the other hand is on the good stuff, care to share Smile or would your kids have to say it is ok first?

    I don't care who your children are, if they don't have some form of corporal punishment they will run all over you. Maybe that is what is happening in Smile's case. It may seem like they are well mannered but they are just running over you and you are afraid to admit it.

    You see it all the time in public. Kids ruling over the parents. Kids screaming in Wal-Mart because mommy won't buy them a toy...then mommy gets what ever the kids want just to shut them up instead of making them mind.

    I'll bust my kids tail if they do that and they know it. They may sull up and act mad but I can promise you they won't pitch a fit, scream and kick cause I've done it before in a store. A guy and his wife asked me what I was doing spanking my kid in public, I replied being a parent and making my kid mind, mind your own business.

    This mother should be ashamed of her actions and learn to be a better parent to her kid instead of making it a money grab...

  • FPHSmom posted at 11:07 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    FPHSmom Posts: 2

    XBear i would give you a high five if I could! Beware all you parents who brag that their children are "the best behaved most respectable children you will ever meet".

  • FPHSmom posted at 11:03 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    FPHSmom Posts: 2

    I have two questions. 1. When stories like this are printed in the paper and allegations are made that are found to be untrue, will there be a retraction and the truth printed? 2. WIll the plaintiff and his family, who have slandered the good name and character of all those wrongly accused, then be punished legally in some way? I define "beatings" in a different way than being paddled.

  • just me posted at 10:26 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    just me Posts: 2

    XBEAR sorry you are wrong. if you would like I am sure Payton will show you he still has the round spot on his bottom so are you saying maybe he was hit at birth.maybe you know more than me.

  • just me posted at 10:24 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    just me Posts: 2

    for some of you who think you know Payton so well and say the bruse is from Paintpall ,I am sorry to bust your bubble but theDARK ROUND PLACE ON HIS BOTTOM IS A BIRTHMARK HE HAS HAD HIS WHOLD LIFE . and no paintball can make a long wide place across anypart of your body like that paddle did.

  • SMILE posted at 5:45 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    SMILE Posts: 6

    XBEAR, I think its safe to say that you will never have children!! And if some woman does have a child with you and your pathetic attitude she would be stupid for doing so. And in the event you did have children I'm sure the mother would feel a little differently about the attitude you have for corporal punishment. I have 2 boys and they are the best behaved and most respectful children you will ever meet and I have never had to raise my hand to them. There are other ways to discipline without hitting. And my boys are young MEN and they can hold their own and take care of theirselves, however I'm not gonna sit back as a parent and let some mindless adult run over them. That how any GOOD parent would be!!

  • xbear posted at 4:52 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    xbear Posts: 4

    ok im going to say this one more time, the bruises was from PAINTBALL.. not the PADDLE. ask every kid in his grade and they will tell you this. SMILE im not a parent yet but when i have kids their going to be MEN or their going to be WOMEN and take up for their actions when they get in trouble, thats how my parents taught me and thats how their getting it. if they get in trouble their going to pay for it. and sneert i agree with everything you say, keep on preaching.

  • SMILE posted at 2:21 pm on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    SMILE Posts: 6

    I do not believe children should be paddled at school either. And if my child were to come home with a bruise on him from being paddled at school, I can certainly assure you that I would not cry about it. I would simply go to the school and the person that administered that paddling would also be carrying a bruise. Get my drift!!! Because I am definitely a momma bear like that!!!! [wink]

    No child should ever be hit like that no matter who that person is!!!

  • sneert posted at 10:30 am on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    sneert Posts: 610

    We are making pansies out of kids these days.Why do you think we have guns,drugs and all sorts of corruption in schools.I remember a well respected football coach when I was in school,paddling his students for making D's and F's.(1 lick for each D,and 2 licks for each F)This day and time ,you cant even give a student a mean look without some crybaby parent and student making a big production out of things.

    All this does is teach our kids that every time somebody hurts their feelings,they can go whining to a lawyer about suing somebody.Most kids these days,need their rear end lit up from time to time,by their parents and their teachers.If their parents(All 4 of them) would get things done at home,maybe the teachers could concentrate on teaching instead of punishment.Then there wouldnt be a need for a police officer at the school any more.[angry]

  • Bama2506 posted at 8:28 am on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    Bama2506 Posts: 185

    Just asking UA because you typed in bold case he signed a paper agreeing to the punishment. I personally think both sides of this story stinks.The parent/students story sounds sensationalized and it appears the school/BOE knows that the kid was hit too hard and physically punished for his academic work which should have been handled administratively. I'm sure he would have choose a diffrent punishment if he knew he was going to be paddled like he is being initiated into a fraternity.

  • Bama2506 posted at 7:09 am on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    Bama2506 Posts: 185

    When is a minor's signature legally binding?

  • SweetTea78 posted at 12:47 am on Thu, Jul 21, 2011.

    SweetTea78 Posts: 21

    I hope she never gets a dime out of this…

  • xbear posted at 10:56 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    xbear Posts: 4

    oh and the bruises the kid had were "circular" anyone notice that? true fact is the kid played paint ball the day before which in case left the round bruises. a certain coach gave me a paddlin one day and its bruise stayed for about 2 weeks in the shape of a paddle, did i complain? nope. said some words when it happened though lol

  • Butterfly posted at 10:54 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    Butterfly Posts: 13

    I do not 100% agree with corporal punishment---for this exact reason. No matter what a student gets a paddling for, they should NEVER come home with a bruise on them. That is totally unacceptable! I think that is the main point which everyone is overlooking-you wouldn't let a random person abuse your child, nor should a teacher be allowed to! Whether the article is reporting the "TRUTH" about what this student got a paddling for, the point is that he was BRUISED. 100% unacceptable.

  • Happy2BHere posted at 10:29 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    Happy2BHere Posts: 15

    I am so sorry Mr. Warren and Mr. Bell are going through this right now. Dealing with portables and damaged classrooms with the beginning of school coming in just a few weeks is enough for anyone. They don't need this.

    I'm curious though. School systems are required to have written policy related to every possible contingency. Does anyone know what the policy regarding corporal punishment in DeKalb County and at Plainview is? I am not sure but believe its required that parents be given a copy of the policy regarding corporal punishment.? that's very important because if the policy and the so-called 'due process' laid out in that policy was followed then this will be a bad experience but the teacher and school system will be ok, if he did not though, then he's in trouble, even if the kid hung out in his room or signed off on a choice slip or whatever.

    Just an FYI, minors can't give those kinds of permission, in writing or otherwise. So that won't help at all. The fact that the child hung out in his room afterwards also doesn't really matter. Neither does it matter if he failed a test, or didn't do homework. What matters is if the parent was made aware of the policy prior to the event and if the policy was followed.

  • Guest posted at 6:20 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    Guest Posts: 13

    I really don't know much about this case just what is in the papers and by word of mouth. (Which I don't always believe) I have three children, two of which is still in the dekalb school system. I have never had a problem with the people who were in authority over my children. But I have always taught my children to respect their elders. I believe disipline starts at home first. Children in this day and age believe they are always right and get their way when they complain enough. I understand some parents don't like their children being paddled at school, but what is their suggestion? Write the school board and help them come up with a solution.

  • xbear posted at 6:05 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    xbear Posts: 4

    I have been paddled many of times over the years by the man, never once did it leave a bruise on me. and the "holes" in his paddle? pretty sure theres not any since i made the thing myself 2 years ago, the kid got a paddling and more than likely he deserved it. and ive had some bad paddlings in my day, but never once did i even complain about it because i took it like a man and deserved what i got. as for the hug, pretty sure ive never even seen the man give anyone a hug so why would he "hug" and 8th grader that he just paddled...

  • Openurmind posted at 5:43 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    Openurmind Posts: 4

    @ janniej, It would appear obvious by your comment that you are not aware of the details in this case, and certainly didn't see the pictures of this child's body. I certainly remember the days when a paddling at school also got you a paddling from home, and the days that we said the pledge of allegiance to the flag and the Lord's Prayer every single morning. Unfortunately, this particular incident isn't the kind of paddling indicative of any paddling that I ever saw in all 13 yrs of my school days, nor is it indicative of any sort of paddling that I'm aware of happening during my adult child's 13 yrs of school days. Please get informed before judging. God Bless You.

  • KidsRpeople2 posted at 5:37 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    KidsRpeople2 Posts: 5

    My husband and I have taught our 3 children from a very young age that "No one has the right to touch them, they can say no, get away and tell someone" to protect them.

    We purchased a family farm in rural Tennessee to raise our children in a safe, less populated environment close to nature only to discover that we are unable to protect our children from overhearing their teachers administer paddlings to their classmates with thick wooden paddles just outside class, where everyone hears, as a reaction to minor infractions such as not turning in homework or horsing around, without parental consent or notification, not required per TN state law. We made a written/verbal presentation to our local school board members in April during "National Child Maltreatment Prevention and Awareness Month" to Demand they Prohibit Paddling of students. They ignored us, no letter, no phone call!

    If school employees administered paddlings to students with wooden paddles in public, rather than within the walls of a tax-payer funded school building, they'd face doing time as would any parent, police offiicer, lawmaker or U.S. Supreme Court Justice!

    Paddling is Prohibited in Schools in 31 U.S. States!

    Please add your voice to the National Campaign to End School Paddling of Students at Unlimited Justice dot com.

    "Plain Talk" is a free online resource for child caregivers in available by searching PTAVE.

  • janniej posted at 5:19 pm on Wed, Jul 20, 2011.

    janniej Posts: 27

    What happened to the days if you got a paddling at school you got one when you got home? Oh yeah that was when we said the pledge a allegiance to the flag and the Lords Prayer every morning before classes.


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