In the U.S, footage of a Memphis high school teacher physically restraining the violent student has been given to police by the 16-year-old boy’s mother, who called the incident “heartbreaking” and demanded the teacher be punished.
However, the school released a statement defending the teacher’s actions, saying they were necessary to prevent the boy from attacking other students.
The teacher slammed the aggressive student to the ground and used the choke-hold to render him unconscious after attempts by other students to break the fight up failed.
Shunkita Qualls, the boy’s mother, said her son came home with bruises but school officials had played down the incident.
However, when Qualls later saw the footage of what happened, she was shocked and contacted the police, calling the teacher’s response too heavy handed.
“It was heartbreaking,” Qualls told FOX13.
It brought tears to my eyes. No mother wants to send their child to school and have to see something like that.”
Being responsible for their classrooms - and the students in them - teachers are sometimes forced to take action when things get out of control, particularly in the case of violent fights.
On 19 March, a deputy principal at Nambucca Heads High School was stabbed by a 16-year-old student after breaking up a fight that he and another boy were involved in.
Such incidents highlight the risks that teachers take when breaking up violent altercations between students, but it also shows that in taking those risks they are acting to ensure the safety of other students.