When Sandra Baker, of Harrodsburg, Kentucky, saw her 9-year-old autistic son was being held by his school in a giant bag, she was in shock.
“God, they do not have my son in that bag…,” she said.
“Mama, is that you?” came the voice from the bag.
The boy had been placed in the “therapy bag” by a teacher when he would not stop misbehaving. To Baker, it looked like a large duffel bag.
Young Christopher Baker suffers from both autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. There are times when the school needs to call in his mother to help calm him down.
On this particular phone call, the school said Christopher was “bouncing off the walls.”
When the teacher’s aide watching over her son struggled to open the cloth bag at her request, Baker found herself even more frustrated. “What if he aspirated on food, or a fire broke out,” she said.
In response to the incident, more than 4,500 people have signed an online petition demanding Christopher’s county improve teacher training and a school’s ability to handle special-needs students.
Sandra pointed out that she is not trying to use the incident to get money. That she must put such a disclaimer on her actions is unfortunate.
There is a significant push to label lawsuits attempting to change the ways of corporations or large entities as “frivolous.” If Christopher had been treated this way by a large organization with a vested interest in doing things this way, the only way to change their mind would be financially.
Luckily Baker was dealing with a public school, where community signatures are enough.
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