Middle school teacher resigns after taping chatty 11-year-old student’s mouth shut

A North Carolina teacher stepped down after a sixth-grade student sent his mother a selfie showing him with tape covering his mouth because he was being too chatty in class — and his shocked parent is now seeking answers over the incident that left her child feeling “humiliated.”

Catherine Webster said her 11-year-old son Brady, a student at Smithfield Middle School, texted the disturbing image of himself with painter’s tape over his mouth on Feb. 13, WRAL reported.

She said her child’s mouth was covered by the tape two or three times by a teacher, which led Webster to alert the school’s principal, LaShunda Faison.

Brady Webster, 11, was not hurt, but his mom said he was “humiliated” by the incident.
Catherine Webster/Facebook

During a school probe into the troubling allegations, Brady told Faison that the mouth-taping had been going on for several months and that other students had also been subjected to the same treatment, Webster said.

The boy also said the teacher, who has yet to be identified, would tape students’ wrists together, Webster told WRAL.

Johnston County Public Schools said the teacher resigned on Feb. 17 and reassured the school community they take allegations of “staff misconduct seriously.”

“We can confirm that whenever such allegations arise, our administration responds swiftly, by investigating the allegations, and sometimes, by removing staff from classrooms pending completion of a thorough investigation,” the district told WRAL.

“School administrators are always able and willing to speak with any and all parents who may have concerns regarding any issue that occurs.”

The teacher was hired in August 2022.

The incident happened inside Smithfield Middle School.
The incident happened inside Smithfield Middle School in Smithfield, North Carolina.
Smithfield Middle School/Facebook

“Just because Brady didn’t get hurt doesn’t make this less serious,” Webster said, adding the incident left her son feeling “humiliated.”

The county sheriff’s office investigated the allegations with other parents who stepped forward with similar accusations, but after talking with prosecutors, it was determined there was not enough to bring a criminal case, WRAL reported.

Webster is only speaking out now after both the school and criminal probes were completed. She told the station that while her son can be chatty and a class clown, the alleged punishment left her fuming.

“I want to know who is going to be held accountable, so this doesn’t happen again,” she said. 

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