Teacher in Fight With Student Reinstated | NBC Southern California

Teacher in Fight With Student Reinstated



    A fight between a teacher and a student is caught on cellphone video at a school in Santa Monica High School.

    A Southern California teacher who was put on paid leave from his job after he was seen in a fight with a student caught on camera was reinstated.

    Mark Black, a science teacher and wrestling coach at Santa Monica High School, was placed on paid leave after the April 4 confrontation that led to the arrests of two students.

    Teacher, Student Clash in Fight Caught on Camera

    [LA] Teacher, Student Clash in Fight Caught on Camera
    A teacher is under investigation for a fight with a student that was caught on camera at Santa Monica High School. Beverly White reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Friday, April 4, 2014.
    (Published Friday, April 4, 2014)

    The move sparked outrage among some parents and students who have been rallying in support of Black. A Facebook page created to support the teacher has been "liked" by more than 23,700 people.

    "Based on what we have learned, it is appropriate to return Mr. Black from paid administrative leave at this time," SMMUSD Superintendent Sandra Lyon said.

    RAW VIDEO: Teacher, Student Fight

    [LA] RAW VIDEO: Teacher, Student Fight
    A fight between a teacher and a student in Santa Monica was caught on cellphone cameras.
    (Published Friday, April 4, 2014)

    One of the high school students pleaded not guilty to charges stemming from the classroom fight.

    The student faces misdemeanor charges of threatening a public school official, possession of a box cutter on school grounds, possession of marijuana on school grounds and force or violence against a school employee.

    A 16-year-old student was also arrested in connection with the brawl. The second student is accused of battery against a school employee.

    In the cellphone video, no punches were thrown, but Black can eventually be seen on the video with his arms locked around the student's legs, on the classroom floor.

    Some witness reports indicated the teacher had been stabbed with a pencil.

    Black was was placed on leave.

    Lyon initially said she was alarmed by what she saw of the videos capturing the fight, which caused Santa Monica police to come to the school.

    But she apologized, saying she had pre-judged the incident based on video that shows "a piece of this story."

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