Former Marion County behavior modification teacher’s license suspended for grabbing child’s collar

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MULLINS, SC (WBTW) – A former teacher at McCormick Elementary School in Mullins had her educator certificate suspended by the South Carolina State Board of Education for “inappropriate physical force with a student.”

According to a consent order of suspension from the state board of education, Carol R. Lear was serving as a behavior modification teacher at McCormick Elementary School during the 2015-2016 school year when she was placed on administrative leave in May after the school received allegations she used physical force on a student. The document states Lear reportedly “grabbed a child by the collar and jerked him around after he refused to comply with her directives.”

Lear claimed the child was throwing papers on the ground, running around the classroom, calling other students names, and knocking items from Lear’s desk onto the floor. Lear admits she then grabbed the child by the collar to subdue him.

The consent order of suspension explains three staff members intervened during the incident in Lear’s classroom, and on June 2, the district superintendent recommended Lear be terminated. Three days later, Lear resigned from her position with the Marion County School District.

The state board notified Lear on July 29 that it would meet to discuss possible disciplinary action regarding her educator certificate. Lear initially reserved her right to a hearing, but later agreed to waive her right and to enter into the consent order of suspension of her educator certificate for the remainder of the 2016-2017 school year, to expire June 30, 2017. In addition, Lear must complete a South Carolina Department of Education approved course addressing classroom management of disruptive behavior.

Lear agreed to and signed the document September 22.