CHICAGO – A Chicago elementary school principal who looked on as a security guard physically forced a fourth-grader out of the building on a cold day has retired.
Cynthia Miller retired from her job at Fiske Elementary School on Friday. In a letter to parents, she wrote that leaving wasn't easy but was the right thing to do, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
"While it has been an incredible privilege to lead this community of outstanding students and educators, I have decided to pursue other options," Miller said.
School surveillance video of the March 26 incident shows Miller looking on as the security guard yanked and shoved the 9-year-old boy out of the building.
Dan Herbert, a lawyer for the family, said a police officer who arrived found the boy sitting outside the school crying after finding every door to the building locked.
The boy's family is suing Miller and Chicago Public Schools. His grandfather, Chicago police Officer Billy Pinkston, was called to the school after the incident. He questioned the school's actions, noting it was 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius) outside and his grandson was without a coat.
"I couldn't believe it," Pinkston said. "Who does that to a child?"
After the boy was removed, the school staff called 911 to report him missing, according to the lawsuit. Then, on a second call to 911, an ambulance was requested because they said the student was biting, scratching and kicking.
The suit also includes that the boy had been in a fight initiated by another student minutes before he was removed from the school.
Herbert said school officials came to see the boy and his family as a problem because they constantly complained that he was bullied.
The boy's family said he is now attending another school and is going to counseling due to his experience at Fiske.
The video prompted a CPS probe and removal of the security guard at the school.
Information from: Chicago Sun-Times, http://chicago.suntimes.com/