Substitute teacher out of a job for reporting child abuse!

I’m sure you are scratching your head wondering how in the hell this is possible.  I was in shock when I read the story as well.  Apparently, this woman DID HER JOB and reported the child abuse on Feb 7th, 2013.  Since then she has lost her job…Really?!?

no child abuse

Kristina Harman, the HERO of the story, has been through the ringer since reporting a child abuse issue at the school she worked at.  How does a woman get fired for doing her job???  Think about this folks.  She did her job, she stood up for what is right, she did her best to protect an abused child…does any of that justify her losing her job?  Here is the direct post that she posted on her Facebook page…

Georgia law states that any employ or volunteer in Monroe County schools is MANDATED to report child abuse. I am a substitute teacher for this school system so it is my legal responsibility to report, which I did witness and report on Feb 7th 2013. I give myself a pat on the back, not only for doing my job, but for do…ing what is right! I pride the ASSISTANT Principals at TG Scott Elementary in Forsyth, Ga for doing their job. They took immediate action and I was prided on protecting the child, afterall, I am there to protect the child and not the schools image, correct??? Myself and the other witness both provided written statements and returned to our duties. I did not discuss the case with anyone else in the school. My involvement was legally confidential. My confidentiality was broken. Everyone knew my name, knew my involvement and steered clear of me.
 On Feb 12th 2013, I met with a social worker for Monroe County schools as well as a sheriff at their request. I again gave a statement and was prided and thanked numerous times. Why wouldnt they have thanked me? Arent they proud that I did the right thing and that this isnt swept under the rug? Of course they were!
Well, that statement ended up in the incident reports of the local paper, The Monroe County Reporter, on Feb 20th 2013. I had no idea because I do not subscribe to the paper. I became aware the following week when approached by a concerned parent in the parking lot of TG Scott. At that moment, I realized I wasent being called for that school anymore (the school my daughter attended). My husband asked me not to jump the gun so I waited a few weeks before asking the Principal on March 7th 2013 why I was no longer getting called. He informed me that he was advised to completely remove me from the list until the investigation was over. WAIT! WHAAAT? Who is on trial here? When did it become legal to retaliate, terminate, or remove any paid worker or even volunteer from a list because they did their job. Humm… Puzzled? That makes two of us. Side Note: Other witness involved is still employed. Wondering what the differences between she and I is? Me too!
 I immediately contacted the Assistant Superintentent, my “boss” will you, and set up a meeting with him for today, March 13th 2013. Ill get to that lovely conversation in a moment. As I sat all weekend, I thought and I thought! Wait a minute, my child is not safe in this school! I was shunned for reporting abuse. You made an example out of me. You showed these teachers they had to choose between feeding their children and protecting ours. Let me get this straight, They serve jail time if they dont report but when they do, they lose their job for some amount of time? They are punished? Wow! Yesterday, March 12th 2013, I withdrew my daughter from Pre K. She was ecstatic! Since the paper ran, she had also felt retaliated against and would tell me the incidents occuring like getting put on the bad square, (teacher said she did nothing wrong) she just put her there when she moved the class… humm…??? Several other things but Ill save those for court. This brings us to today, I met with Mike Hickman. Man, is he a character. He has been in management for some time Im sure by the way he answered questions with another question, avoided answering most of mine, and spent the whole maybe 5 minutes justifying and contradicting himself. He let me know that though his removing me did have to do with the child abuse case, it wasent because I reported child abuse. I replied that, that makes zero since, he replied thats your opinion. That made me laugh and again Ill say, that makes zero sense. He told me he was over everything and could remove whoever he wanted when he got ready (or something to that affect). I asked why the other witness was still employed. He said sometimes we have to make decisions and thats the one we made. Seriously? That’s your answer, okay Ill take it…. Straight to my lawyer. I let him know I would be pursuing this case and going to all media outlets. If we dont spread the word, we are failing these children. The teachers will fear reporting and will fail to report because they need to feed their children. Which is why I refused to work other schools under Mike Hickman. I cant do my job knowing if I witness and report abuse again I no longer have a job. The teachers cant do theirs either. I took this job to protect the children, not the schools image. The Principal (from what Ive been told) hates negative media and was embarrassed by it making the paper. But why? It said you saved the child! Hello? That is not negative media, oh but this IS! I am asking you all to share, share, share! Please! Until this is big enough that they cant hide it and it is made sure these teachers wont follow in my footsteps or fear following in my footsteps, I truely believe these students are in danger! PLEASE!
So, there you have it!  I am appalled by the way this situation has progressed!  This woman seems to have done her job and then got punished for it.  We, as parents, want to know that our children are in good hands while they are at school during the day.  If you’ve got teachers being fired for doing their job and reporting issues like this then the fear sets in.  They fear losing their income for protecting a child.  What kind of sense does that make?
I am waiting to receive the article from the paper there about this incident.  Just as soon as I get it I will post a follow-up.
Please feel free to search her name on Facebook and share her story.  Let’s give ’em the negative media so incidents like this do not continue to happen!  And to Kristina Harman, thank you for doing what you did.  As a parent, it is comforting to know there are teachers out there willing to speak up for the children.

10 thoughts on “Substitute teacher out of a job for reporting child abuse!

  1. what the WHAT?! Let me get this straight, she lost her job for doing the right thing and when asked WHY she lost her job she got the essential ‘I can do what I want because Im in a position of power’ excuse? Wow. Someone has let being leader of a school go to his head! What a horrible thing to have happened. This inexcuseable on all levels!

    • armyliving13 says:

      I completely agree! This is such an outrage! It’s crazy to see people with a little title get to do what they want and get away with it. I hope this teacher wins this!!!

  2. Benjamin Dover says:

    I wish people would get the facts before believing this crazy woman. I know someone who works at this school and it is a wonderful school. The person I know has direct knowledge of this incident and says it has been blown WAY out of proportion. She did not LOSE her job, she was temporarily removed from the list while it was under investigation. The alleged abuse didn’t happen either, as my friend works in the same grade level. Mrs. Harman mentions another witness that gave a written statement as well and is still employed, but she failed to mention that the other witness is a FULL time employee and that her account of the incident did not match Harmans’. Please remember that just because someone says something does NOT make it true.

    • armyliving13 says:

      I understand there is more than one side to each story. Obviously, you have been told a different one. I respect that and appreciate your comment. But a lot about this incident does not add up to me. Temporarily taken off the list? She was removed from her job without being told about it. That doesn’t sound like someone being temporarily taken off a list due to a pending investigation to me. Why does she have to lose income while a case of child abuse is being checked out?


  4. katie says:

    This lady was a sub, she wasn’t a full-time employed teacher. Teachers can choose who they use for sub positions and if there are any kind of issues going on with this specific sub I doubt anyone would be using her anyway. Subs are only used on an as-needed basis too, so she’s really not guaranteed money either. I’m not trying to put this lady down, but if I was a teacher I probably wouldn’t use her simply because her grammar is terrible.
    Another thing to consider: there are always 2 sides to any story. We are only being told her side on Facebook. The person that posted that this wasn’t an accurate account of what truly happened could be right. This sub may have something against the child’s parents and reported this alleged child abuse as a form of vengance against them. I find it strange that this person spoke more about suing the school than the reason she reported the abuse. Another thing to consider is how the parents felt if this reported abuse had no merit. If my child fell down and got a bruise at home, and then no one but her sub reported it, I would definitely not want that sub at my child’s school. If there was truly abuse going on I am sure the child’s teacher, P.E. coach, music teacher, principal, art teacher, cafeteria worker, or janitor would have noticed it. And if the abuse was ongoing I am sure it would’ve been noticed before this far into the year. If your child’s substitute teacher (not even regular teacher) reported your child was being abused and it was completely incorrect, wouldn’t you want them removed from their school before she yelled “child abuse” on another family or so you didn’t have to deal with her every time you dropped your child off at school?
    Something just doesn’t add up to this story. If the principal agreed with her and believed abuse was going on she would have her back and she would definitely not want this sub to be removed. When a sub or teacher does the right thing most of the time they are supported. Plus, why would this sub yank her child out of school if she was right and did nothing wrong? Abuse cases aren’t taken to the media unless she told them herself because she is “sue happy” & wants to paint the school and board in a negative light.
    I hope I’m wrong and this sub is telling the true, but why not handle it in a private way and protect the child instead of blasting it on fb and trying to get attention? Again, doesn’t make a lot of sense…I think she’s leaving out something.

    • armyliving13 says:

      I agree there are always two sides to every story. This woman did not go to the local paper, as far as I know.
      The issue at hand is a case of child abuse…I hardly think grammar should come into play here.
      I thank you for your comment and I agree that things do not add up, but that doesn’t mean Mrs. Harman is lying. Perhaps we should all choose not to judge. Maybe we should all put the children first and make sure this particular child is alright instead of pointing fingers.

  5. katie says:

    *truth* not true… thankfully I’m not a sub.
    And, I don’t have a dog in this fight. I don’t know these people, and don’t know anything about this story other than this lady’s post. I am very involved in my child’s though, and we had a similar situation with a volunteer this year and she was removed as a volunteer for lies and drama she caused, then yanked her child out of school. Maybe this lady is telling the truth, but maybe there is more to the story. Just don’t jump to conclusions until the whole story comes out.

    • armyliving13 says:

      And until the whole story comes out, this woman should not have lost her income. I know drama is out there. I know people lie and exaggerate the truth. And I also know people with titles tend to sweep things under the rug so their reputation doesn’t get tarnished. Is all that true in this case? I’m not sure. But children should always come first and teachers shouldn’t fear losing their jobs for speaking up. That was my major point in the post.
      A lot of people automatically assume this woman is lying. What if she isn’t? Would you want teachers afraid to speak up for your child? I don’t think so. No parent wants that.

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