Last Friday afternoon, while in the middle of the fifth-grade class lecture on “Theodore Rex,” fifth-grader Daisy pleaded with school security guard Ralph Harbin to allow her back into the classroom.
“I’m in the restroom,” she said.
He went to check on her, and was horrified to find her empty wheelchair, its handle broken. Daisy had not been shot, but had been dumped out of her wheelchair. With only her backpack and a flower pot to keep her warm, she was taken to the school nurse.
On Saturday, the school nurse called the supervisor for the behavioral health team, and requested that Daisy be placed in protective custody. The supervisor received a call that her complaint was out, and had no other information on Daisy’s well-being.
Before her union representative could arrive to assist, Daisy had been placed in a room at the base of the airplane hanger in the school’s parking lot. Parents were sent to wait in a driveway for an answer. It wasn’t until Monday afternoon that she was spotted by a press photographer, who told school officials of the girl’s disappearance.
Immediately after the situation came to light, the school district released a statement saying that staff members had feared for Daisy’s safety, and that there was no way of knowing if the 12-year-old had walked away on her own. The school district in Illinois also released a statement promising that “If anything ever is found to jeopardize our safety procedures, we will take immediate action.”
After being hospitalized in a psych ward for a week, Daisy went back to school. Her parents, Kathy and Marc Rosel, said that their insurance will cover any medical costs. However, Daisy is now facing a new worry. She is still left to deal with the loss of a friend and the plight of her paralyzed wheelchair.
“There are not so many things you can be scared of in the world,” she said in a CNN interview. “But if my wheelchair’s broken, I could be in pain.”
Read the full story at the Washington Post.
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