STATESBORO, Ga. (WSAV) – A seventh-grade teacher at a Bulloch County middle school has been suspended after he was seen on video shoving a student as classes changed.
Marc Rountree, a social studies teacher at Langston Chapel Middle School, was suspended without pay for 60 days, according to a letter from the Bulloch County Board of Education.
New video from the incident in early December shows Rountree shoving a student to the ground. The seventh-grader slammed into the lockers before crawling on the floor.
In a hearing last week, while fighting to keep his job, Rountree told school board members he was reacting to the student touching him.
“I felt a presence on my back, on my buttocks,” Rountree said. “That was a feeling that I didn’t feel before in the hallway, so I responded.”
In that same hearing, the student’s mom told the board she was lied to, and not shown the video when it happened last year.
“When you sit there and tell me that no one is being reprimanded for this incident, that it was a complete accident, I’m under the impression that everything is OK,” she said. WSAV is not naming the mother to protect the child’s identity.
Rountree has only been teaching in Bulloch County since March. According to his job application, he has more than six years of experience in classrooms in the Augusta area. His personnel file says he’s also the school’s baseball coach and was among 21 other teachers being groomed for leadership roles in the district.
He’s the second teacher this school year caught on video with their hands on a student.
Former Elementary Assistant Principal Patrick Hill retired after a video showed him tossing a child in a hallway. He’s facing a battery charge.
WSAV reached out to Rountree, asking if he wanted to share his side of the story, but didn’t hear back.