Parents were shocked when they obtained a video from their son’s Illinois school showing him detained inside a window-less, cell-like ‘seclusion room’ used for timeouts.
Staley is seen on the footage, a therapeutic, public school in Chicago, IL. The video triggered a massive state investigation into the controversial practice. The boy appears upset and is prevented from leaving the room by a female school aide. When Staley, who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, kicks the woman, she grabs and shoves him.
His mother later learned of the incident when Staley came home and complained of a ‘scary office’ at school, reports ProPublica Illinois. The mom didn’t know what he meant until she saw the footage a month later, a Pro Publica and Chicago Tribune investigation found.
That’s when the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services began investigating whether kids were being abused in ‘the office’. Two aides at the school later resigned, including Nicholas I., who faces criminal charges over allegations of using excessive force on students. His attorney says the aide denies wrongdoing.
The other aide was the woman in the video with Staley. Jennifer Aguirre, soon after learning about the state’s investigation, died by suicide. She had been working at the school for 18 years.
We hope to see less cases like this in the future.