Okmulgee Public Schools responded last week to allegations of child abuse made by a parent of a student with special needs.
An OPS paraprofessional was accused of spanking a special needs student at the Okmulgee Primary School on the first day of school on Aug. 16.
The accusations were made public at the Oct. 10 Okmulgee School board meeting. The meeting was already adjourned, when the mother asked for answers about the situation and what was being done.
“I want to know who investigated my son being spanked in the school,” the parent asked.
After being told the meeting was over, and that an appointment should be made, the reply was, “No, I don’t want to make an appointment. We’re going to talk about this now.”
She also stated there was a need to investigate several school officials, including the superintendent.
“She is coming after this football league because we speak out against special education,” she stated.
In response to the allegations, Okmulgee Public Schools released the following statement: “Okmulgee Public School District has continuously and consistently looked out for the care and safety of our students. In regards to the recent allegation of a primary student being administered corporal punishment, a full investigation at the building level and then at the district level was conducted. The investigation was thorough. The administration conducted interviews with all parties involved and reviewed the video footage. After careful review of interviews and the video footage, no evidence was found to support the allegation of corporal punishment.
“The parent was invited to view the video footage and has neglected to do so. School administration has repeatedly reached out and continues to attempt to schedule a meeting with the parent. All efforts at this time have not resulted in a meeting with the parent.
“Okmulgee Public School District assures all parents that we will continue to provide a safe and supportive learning environment for each and every student. Furthermore, we assure all parents their child will receive a free appropriate public education (FAPE).”