Shocking new footage has surfaced showing a Louisiana middle school teacher being roughed up and arrested after simply standing up and voicing her opinion at a school board meeting.
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?!” These were the shrill cries of Deyshia Hargrave as handcuffs were snapped onto her wrists, “YOU JUST PUSHED ME TO THE FLOOR!”
The disturbing viral video, which is now sparking unanimous outrage, was filmed during a meeting between school board members and teachers—the same teachers who, as Deyshia stood up and pointed out, have endured growing class sizes despite having to “work very hard with very little to maintain the salaries that we have.”
“As I’ve been teaching over the last couple of years,” she added during an impassioned speech to board members who were about to vote to increase the superintendent’s pay, “I’ve seen class sizes grow enormously.”
This teacher was forcibly arrested at a school board meeting after questioning the superintendent’s pay raise pic.twitter.com/nkYIbRkLPU
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) January 10, 2018
“We’re doing the work,” she continued, “the students are doing the work—at the top, that’s not where kids learn. It’s in the classroom. And those teachers, like myself, are not getting a dime from that, and that is unspeakable.”
And no point can Deyshia be heard raising her voice or acting disruptively—but when faculty members’ pay increases are at stake, simply voicing dissent is enough to warrant retaliation.
She continued, this time directly addressing the superintendent, “how are you going to take a raise?…And we have not gotten raises. How are you going to take that money, because it is basically taking it out of the pockets of teachers.”
Suddenly, a man from the board pounded his gavel, saying, “Stop right now” and claimed her question was not relevant.
The arrest was a disgrace. The teacher was speaking calmly, never raising her voice, and because she dared to question the superintendent’s pay raise, she ultimately was arrested. This is intimidation by the school board! #QuestionEverything
— Doris Daze (@DorisDaze2016) January 9, 2018
Deyshia rephrased her words. “I am saying how are you taking the raise when you are basically taking from the teachers and employees under you. When we have class sizes that are that big. This directly speaks to what you have just voted on.”
Soon afterwards, the marshal began to approach her—a man significantly larger than her—and told her she needed to sit down or leave.
The marshal then attempts to grab her, at which point she says, “Sir, do not.”
Finally, Deyshia decides to leave the room on her own accord, at which point the marshal follows her out, until a few moments later commotion is heard outside.
The person holding the camera quickly follows, only to find Deyshia on the floor shouting while the marshal snaps cuffs on her wrists.
“Stop resisting!” he shouts.
“I am not,” retorts Deyshia, “you just pushed me on to the floor. I am way smaller than you!”
You Can Watch The Full Incident Video Here:
Eventually placed in the back of a patrol car, the helpless school teacher from Rene A. Rost Middle School in Vermilion Parish was originally charged with “remaining where forbidden and resisting an officer.”
However, the charges were later dropped after being reviewed by Abbeville city attorney and prosecutor, Ike Funderburk, who declared, “I have been to hundreds of school board meetings and I saw nothing from her conduct that was different from any of the others I have seen. I concluded there was no criminal activity on her part.”
As of now, local police and authorities have refused to give comments, though they might want to act quickly as dissent online continues to pile up:
Jerome Puyau,the Vermillion Parish Superintendent of Schools,if you are reading this,I demand your resignation as superintendent for having a school teacher arrested for calling out your corruption. You are a disgrace to the state of Louisiana.
— RegularJoe (@RegularJoe1970) January 9, 2018
What’s wrong with being a teacher?
— Teacher Problems (@HSTeachProbs) January 10, 2018
#SHAME on #VermillionParish‘s #JeromePuyau #AnthonyFontana #ReggieHilts for trying to silence & arrest teacher-of-the-year #DeyshiaHargrave. $38K raise for Puyau but no raise for teachers for 10 yrs? NO! No men arrested at Brd mtgs, but Hargrave is? NO!https://t.co/C2LKi9Ww8C
— Elli F (@ElliFtaka) January 10, 2018