Teacher Cynthia Ambrose indicted for allegedly telling children to hit a bully

Dec. 5, 2012 at 10:20 PM
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UNIVERSAL CITY, Texas, Dec. 5 (UPI) -- A Texas kindergarten teacher let go for allegedly exhorting students to hit a boy deemed a bully by another teacher has been indicted.

Cynthia Ambrose, 43, was in her 11th year as a teacher at Salinas Elementary School in Universal City when she advised another, less-experienced, kindergarten teacher on how to discipline a 6-year-old student who allegedly bullied other children, the San Antonio Express-News reported Tuesday.

Ambrose instructed the other children to strike the alleged bully, saying "Hit him harder," and "Teach him why bullying is bad," the misdemeanor indictment handed up Tuesday showed.

Police said some students told them they were afraid not to follow the teacher's instructions.

The less-experienced colleague reported the incident about two weeks later. She was placed on temporary leave and reprimanded and Ambrose was told not to return.

The alleged bully's mother told the Express-News in June she hoped criminal charges would be filed so Ambrose wouldn't be able to get a teaching job anywhere else. She said school officials had never told her of any behavioral problems with her son.

Ambrose faces a maximum one-year prison sentence if found guilty of the official oppression charge, the newspaper reported.

"You're teaching those children that violence is OK and it is the way to solve a situation. That's contrary to anything that should be taught in the school. The teacher is using the very violence she's hoping to eliminate," said Adriana Biggs, chief of the district attorney's white-collar crimes division.

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