Five-Year-Old Boy With Autism Accused of Sexual Harassment

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Five-Year-Old Boy With Autism Accused of Sexual Harassment

 

More than three weeks ago, Summery Putnam, mother of 5-year-old Nathan, received a call from a teacher where her son was studying. They told her that Nathan, a kindergarten student who has autism at East Ridge Elementary, had overstepped boundaries when playing with his classmates.

 

Photo Credit: Daily Mail

 

Now, at such a young age, Nathan has been labeled a “sex offender” after allegedly hugging a fellow classmate. The Independent, a British online newspaper established in 1986 as a politically independent national morning newspaper, reported that the boy’s teacher accused him of “sexual activities” for hugging a child and kissing another on the cheek. “I was sick to my stomach because first of all don't you understand he's a five-year-old? He's a child,” Putnam said. 

 

Photo Credit: Daily Mail

 

However, the school denied that they labeled Nathan a sexual predator. They said that the issue was not just about hug or kiss. In a statement, Tim Hensley, spokesperson of the Hamilton County Department of Education, said, “Also, there was no punishment given to the child by the school. The school is simply interested in the wellbeing of a very young child as he grows and learns with his classmates at East Ridge Elementary.”

 

Photo Credit: Debi Deal Amick on Facebook (via Daily Mail)

 

The Daily Mail, a British daily middle-market newspaper published in London in a tabloid format, reported that there are laws that restrict discussions of what happens in the classroom. However, they can release the documentation of the issues discussed with the family if they agree to it. Debi Amick, Nathan's grandmother, took to Facebook to air her concerns. According to her, the school said that the issue with Nathan will go on his record for the rest of his life, which East Ridge Elementary has denied.

“Who do you turn to for help when the school will not even listen to the child's doctor when he explains the child's difficulties in his comprehension of simple things such as boundaries,” Amick said. 

 

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