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Two Washington teachers arrested - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

Two Washington teachers arrested

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Two teachers at Washington Elementary have been arrested, accused of bullying a child.

Tracy Gallow, 50, has been booked with malfeasance in office, simple battery, intimidation and interference in school operation. 

Ann Marie Shelvin, 44, was booked with two counts encouraging or contributing to child delinquency, one count malfeasance in office and two counts intimidation and interference in the operation of schools. 

They are accused of threatening to fail students who did not fight one of their classmates. The accusations involve an 11-year-old victim. 

Deputies were called back in February by the mother of the victim, Sheriff Bobby Guidroz says. She said a teacher, Shelvin, was bullying her child. She said was told to report her complaint to the St. Landry School Board. But she returned to deputies earlier this month, saying the bullying had continued. 

Deputies allegedly found that Shelvin intimidated and interfered in the operation of a public school with three of her other students by threatening to fail them if they would not fight with one of their classmates. Shelvin also reportedly told the bullied juvenile to “Go and Kill Yourself," the Sheriff said. 

Detectives interviewed a student that was involved in the bulling of the 11 year old juvenile and that student allegedly admitted that she was forced by Shelvin to start an altercation with her classmate that resulted in several students being sent to the principal’s office.  The student allegedly admitted she was told if she would not fight with the 11 year old, that Shelvin would refuse to help her with her class work just like she refuses to help the 11 year old.  The student stated that she was scared that she would be treated like the 11 year old and would fail the 7th grade, the Sheriff said. 

The mother of the student involved in the bullying told detectives that the incident had been going on since October of last year with her daughter being threatened by Shelvin to fight another student or Shelvin was going to fail her, the sheriff said.  The mother stated that Shelvin was escorted off the school grounds and Tracy Gallow then took over the class. 

Gallow then started pulling, pushing and yelling at her daughter because she reported to the principal that Shelvin was making her and two of her other friends fight the 11 year old because Shelvin did not like her or her mother, the sheriff said. 

Detectives observed the school video footage and witnessed Gallow on two occasions pushing the juvenile student on the school bleachers stopping her from exiting the gym.  During the interview, Gallow allegedly admitted to pushing the juvenile on the bleachers because she felt she was too upset to go start her testing.

“Students should not have to attend school and be bullied especially by teachers that are there for their education, guidance and safety.  The parents did the right thing, they reported it to the school board, and continued to monitor and talk to their children," Guidroz said. "The bullying continued and they took the next step by contacting law enforcement again.”

Superintendent Patrick Jenkins issued the following statement on the case: 

"The St. Landry Parish School System (SLPSS) is aware of and investigating the recent allegations involving an employee from Washington Elementary School. Wewant to assure the school community that we take reports of this nature very seriously and will do everything in our power to protect the health, safety and welfare of allstudents. Due to student privacy laws, SLPSS will not provide details regarding the student involved. There will be no further comment on the ongoing personnel investigation."

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