An incident that allegedly happened in a seventh grade classroom has the parent of a middle school student calling for action. The parent claims that nine male students from Bell Middle School in San Diego were watching pornography on their cell phones during English class and masturbating.
The San Diego Unified School District has confirmed that nine male students were suspended in May but they could not legally reveal the reason for the suspensions.
The parent alleged that Ed Johnson, the teacher in the classroom, did not try to stop the behavior. He allegedly said that he would give students referrals if he caught them, then continued reading to students from his desk.
The parent, Edith Duran, said that her son was not involved in the incident but he was in the classroom at the time. He apparently did speak up out of fear of being bullied. Duran met with the vice principal, who told her about the sexual activity.
Duran said, “When I send my child to school, I want to feel he’s safe. I don’t send him to sit in a classroom next to boys watching porn, explicit porn, which [the] vice principal did tell me [was] very explicit. I asked the vice principal how is it this was going on under his nose, a group of boys huddling around a cell phone watching porn; how is it this was going on and [the teacher] had no idea?”
The vice principal had no answer for that question, according to Duran but did comment about the teacher’s reaction:
“She said he is in shock. Mr. Johnson is in shock; he can’t believe this happened. That’s what she said…Let this be a reality check that he needs to do a better job as far as teaching our children and not just sitting back reading and letting them do whatever it is they want to do.”
Duran believes that the end result of all this is that her son and other students in that class have become victims. She said, “I do expect a phone call. I want therapy, I want some kind of counseling, not just for my son, but for other children victimized in this situation.”
Duran claims the school has not offered any details about therapy and counseling, even though they supposedly did initially promise it for the students in the classroom.
The school district offered no comment on whether Johnson is under investigation, even though sources reported that a substitute teacher was in the classroom with him from the day of the incident until the end of the school year.