A South Side Chicago principal abruptly retired after she got caught on video watching as a security guard forced a 9-year-old boy outside of a school into the brutal cold.
On Friday, Fiske Elementary Principal Cynthia Miller retired amid an investigation and after the boy’s family filed a lawsuit against her and the Chicago Public Schools, The Chicago Sun-Times reports.
The school’s security video from March 26 appears to show Miller and a counselor, watching on unbothered as the guard pulled the child’s arm, as he forced the student outside. The video seems to show that Miller made no effort to stop the security guard from blocking the boy’s right to free public education.
The child is in the fourth grade.
Miller notified parents of her impromptu retirement in a letter. She stated: “While it has been an incredible privilege to lead this community of outstanding students and educators, I have decided to pursue other options.”
“This is not an easy decision, but as I reflect on my career path, I feel it is the right choice for me at this time.” She made no mention of the impending lawsuit or her role in it.
The lawsuit states that the boy was in a fight before he was pushed out of the building.
The boy later complained that he was being bullied. His mom moved him from Lafayette, Indiana to stay with his grandparents, said Dan Herbert the family’s attorney. Shortly after attending the school, the boy says he was bullied according to the suit.
After the guard grabbed the boy and put him out, school staff called the police to report that the child was missing. Then they called 911 again to report that the child was scratching, biting and kicking, the suit said.
“They lied,” said Dan Herbert the family’s attorney at a news conference on Oct. 1.
Herbert said a cop located the traumatized boy sitting outside of the school crying after he tried to open every door to the school.
Child Protective Services launched an investigation and the security guard has since been fired.
Yvonne Pinkston, the boy’s mother said she received a call to pick up her child but was unavailable. The child’s grandfather Billy Pinkston, a Chicago police officer, instead, came to the school.
“I couldn’t believe it,” he said. “It was 40 degrees that day, 40 degrees outside. No coat, you know. Who does that to a child?”
The family attorney further stated that the school officials grew tired of the boy’s complaints of being bullied.
“This would not have occurred on the North Side of Chicago. It would not have occurred in my neighborhood,” Herbert said.