The behavioral specialist who allegedly slammed a student to the floor and injured the 13-year-old boy’s leg so severely that it’s scheduled to be amputated today wasn’t an employee of the Muscogee County School District and doesn’t provide services to the system anymore.
That development is in Tuesday afternoon’s statement MCSD communications director Valerie Fuller emailed the Ledger-Enquirer in response to questions about the Sept. 12 incident in which Bryant Mosley “had to physically restrain a student,” according to the Columbus Police Department report from Lt. Consuelo Askew, who works part time as a resource officer at the Edgewood Student Services Center.
Edgewood contains the AIM program at 3538 Forrest Road. AIM is the alternative program for students in grades 3-12 who have violated school district rules and temporarily have been removed from their home school.
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“We extend our thoughts and prayers to our student who is undergoing medical treatment and to his family,” Fuller said. “We are committed to conducting a thorough review of the alleged incident at the AIM/Edgewood Student Services Center to determine all of the facts.”
Mosley is employed by Mentoring and Behavioral Services, Fuller said. MBS, according to its website, is headquartered in Columbus and also serves Phenix City. MBS “specializes in individualizing holistic behavior approaches to produce a healthy and productive environment that fosters positive growth,” the company’s website says.
Fuller told the Ledger-Enquirer she doesn’t know how long Mosley had served MCSD, and that information wasn’t immediately available. The woman who answered the phone Tuesday afternoon at MBS wouldn’t answer any of the Ledger-Enquirer’s questions and wouldn’t transfer the call to a spokesperson. She said she would leave a message for the owner, whom she declined to name.
Mosley no longer is providing services for MCSD, Fuller said, although she didn’t say when that decision was made.
“Mr. Mosley is specifically trained in MindSet curriculum, a system of preventing and managing aggressive behavior, and Georgia restraint requirements,” Fuller said. “It is our understanding that there were issues concerning the safety of the child and others in the room, which called for the use of restraint per state guidance.
“Physical restraint is allowed in Georgia public schools and educational programs in those situations in which the student is an immediate danger to himself or others and the student is not responsive to less intensive behavioral interventions including verbal directives or other de-escalation techniques.”
But the lawyer for the student’s family, Renee Tucker, told the Ledger-Enquirer that the student claims he and the specialist were the only people in the room when the incident started and then the assistant principal saw the specialist slam the student to the floor at least once.
The Ledger-Enquirer asked Fuller what MCSD is doing about this incident and what changes have been made at the AIM program because of it.
“We will continue the thorough review of the incident to determine all of the facts and to make any necessary recommendations, because the safety of all students and all employees is priority,” Fuller said.
Reginald Griffin, the coordinator at Edgewood, referred all of the Ledger-Enquirer’s questions to Fuller. Griffin, however, did say that Sept. 12 was the first and only day the student involved in the incident was in the AIM program.
As he walked home Tuesday afternoon from Edgewood, 17-year-old Cedric Jenkins said he periodically has attended the AIM program for the past 1½ years. He doesn’t know Mosley or the student involved in the incident, Jenkins said, but he does know the alleged altercation doesn’t represent the program.
“All the teachers are straight, like cool,” he said. “They just want you to get your work done and stuff.”
Jenkins said he was “shocked” when he heard about the incident from other students. He never has seen an AIM student being physically restrained, Jenkins said.
Staff writer Sarah Robinson contributed to this report