Northbridge Middle School Student Charged With Assaulting Teachers

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Northbridge police were called to the middle school on Linwood Avenue Monday for a report of an unruly student.
Northbridge police were called to the middle school on Linwood Avenue Monday for a report of an unruly student. Photo Credit: File

NORTHBRIDGE, Mass. - An 11-year-old Northbridge Middle School student was arrested Monday after he allegedly assaulted two teachers.

Police said they were called to the school on Linwood Avenue at 1:03 p.m. for a reported unruly male student.

That student was charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (shod foot), assault and battery, disorderly conduct and disturbing a school assembly, police said.

The boy was taken to Worcester Juvenile Court for arraignment.

Arresting officers were Lt. Timothy Labrie and Officer Kristina Westbury.

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I am a mother of 3. I make mistakes like every parent, but work very hard at molding my children into good people. Yes, I'm a single mom who has to work a lot of hours to support the four of us and of course it is hard. My 5-year-old and my 6-year-old are happy, well-adjusted, well-behaved kids. In fact, the 6-year-old's report card says he's "a joy to have in class" and "an excellent role model for his peers". Although hearing that makes me happy, I find myself wishing things were ever that simple with my oldest. My 11-year-old has been a handful and a half since he could crawl. He was a very clever and overactive toddler who became an accomplished escape artist before he was 2, taking off on every caregiver he had, including myself. His cleverness later led to him skipping the second grade, in spite of severe behavioral issues. He has ADHD, Oppositional/Defiant Disorder, social anxiety, and possible Aspergers. He also has sensory issues described as "needing constant stimulation but easily overstimulated", pretty difficult to walk that line... He had a rough start in school, and was put in a self-contained classroom up until 4th grade. If you knew him at age 5 (when he was first evaluated/diagnosed/put on ADHD meds), you would see he has come a LONG way overall. But he still has terrible impulse control and sometimes regresses just when I think he's moving further forward. He requires inventive parenting, as no method of discipline is effective for very long. He is not out of control at home, although he sometimes has emotional meltdowns over seemingly insignificant things. Nevertheless, he is a gentle spirit with a big heart. He's also an excellent, attentive, and protective big brother who the younger 2 kids love to death while also recognizing how hard things are for him. Unfortunately he's also been through a lot of tough circumstances, including a completely absent father and having moved 9 times in his 11 years of life. In addition, the last move put us in a situation where he was singled out and verbally/physically attacked by the woman we live with. Needless to say we're about to move again, but this living situation has caused a lot of anger in him that just wasn't there before and that I pray can be healed in time. My son is currently on medication that does help a lot, although I never believed in ADHD meds before I had him. We're trying to find an anti-depressant that helps as well, he now seems depressed often, although he didn't used to be. He seems to be struggling more since he started middle school, and getting inconsistent grades very unlike the stellar grades he's had since Kindergarten. Sometimes I can tell when he wakes up that he's going to have a randomly awful day, sometimes it's a surprise to everyone. I honestly feel that the Northbridge faculty is doing an excellent job with him and that they have his best interests at heart. However, last Monday was one of his awful days when he just couldn't seem to get ahold of himself. His behavior escalated to the point that he was being taken to a time-out area to "reset". Not wanting to go, he struggled and flailed, kicking a teacher with his sneaker in the process. At this point the staff became understandably concerned and called the police, and my son was subsequently arrested. Although I am horrified and mortified that my 11-year-old was arrested, it might be the wake-up call he needs to turn himself around. I have made it clear to him that no matter how bad of a day he is having, he simply cannot act like that at school, or anywhere else for that matter. As hard as it is to witness, I know he needs to be held accountable for his behavior. He is not a little kid anymore and he knows right from wrong, and I am forever reminding him to take the extra second to think before making a bad choice. I want to make it clear that he is not a violent kid or a bully, and has never been in trouble like this. But he does need to realize the seriousness of getting on the wrong path. This does seem to have woken him up a bit, as he doesn't know whether or not he'll be taken away or locked up. But he is sorry and has acknowledged that he alone got himself into this mess by not trying harder to exert self-control. He will be going to court, and I'm hoping he doesn't get locked up because I don't think that is what he needs, although clearly he does need more services. He has an IEP, sees counselors at school and a therapist outside of school, and has been on the waiting list for the psychiatrist affiliated with his therapist. We are all trying to help him in any way we can and I believe he will be able to lead a happy and successful life. I will never give up on him. Anyway, thank you for taking the time to read my (long-winded I know) explanation of my son's side of this matter. And like I said, I'm not making excuses for his behavior because there is no excuse for it, I just want people to try and better understand my son's background instead of assuming he's an evil monster.

This should not have happened but, it seems like overkill to me. The boy is 11 years old a meer child. They want to destroy his life for kicking a teacher? Something caused him to do it but, they'll never hear his side of the story.

Sadly there have been teachers with bullying issues of their own in this school system.

The facts arent present so it is really hard to judge, but to judge the parent isnt fair either since most parents cant control their child from home.

There was an incident a few years back where a child did have a medical reaction to something a teacher gave them and the child paid the price for that incident.
Being very familiar with this school system, I can tell you it needs a complete overhaul.

Interesting that we have heard nothing else of this story since it happened. No mention anywhere, not on the Northbridge Times, FB or even in the Telegram. Was this young person at fault? Who is protecting this young person or teachers? This is an 11 year old who was arrested!!! Who is helping this young person?

I don't feel the article is very clear about the incident and it is very unfair to judge the child or the parents or the teachers for that matter. Maybe the child has autism, special needs or is mentally challenged. Many students these days suffer from depression and they are on medicine. Changes in medicines can cause different reactions in people. Many individuals with special needs have other problems like explosive disorders and they are integrated in the regular classroom settings. Maybe the young person felt uncomfortable with how he was being treated by others. There are many "maybe" situations and unanswered questions here and it is wrong to judge anyone involved in this incident.

I get so sick of hearing depression autism/special needs. When I was growing up we never heard of any of this crap and most of us turned out fine because we got our asses kicked when we got home if we screwed up, and if they brought back the draft it would change alot of attitudes.

union man,

What did you do to stop this "depression autism/special needs" from happening?
What ever it was that you did it appears that it did not work.

By the way, you must have lead a sheltered life as a student, not to know that these children existed. They existed an were sent to COM special schools, some not too far from Town. Some of us knew Doctors who worked with them. For some reason or other these schools were closed and communities such as Northbridge developed "Special needs" programs that take in students from other communities who have not developed the ability to have these programs.

When we read the newspaper we find that the military suicide rate is experiencing a seriously upward trend, and you think a "...draft" would change a lot of attitudes."

"Old Guys Rule"

I our day, the now old guys used to take their hats off while entering a building, unless they were "under arms" or in a color guard.

We know that the world is always changing do you.

As was said "You can't go home again."

upso I was raised in south Boston during the sixties and we handled our own problems on c street we didn't live sheltered life's by any means. If we had a problem it was taken care of after school in the parking lot. And the teachers didn't get involved in our problem.

union man,

In some of the places we were raised the teachers only got involved if there was blood let at so called "recess". They did the "patching up" if required.

"Southie" isn't the only place in the world where "guys" settled their problems in the parking lot (If you had a parking lot).

Many so called "bullies" found out they could "bleed" too.

Sounds like he has great parents (NOT) send him to a dentention center for a year.

That appears to be a personal attack on the "parents", although you have the "right" to say it.

Remember the old Indian saying about "walking in another's moccasins" before criticism?

maybe they should do something about the serious bullying problem in that school several children have been to the point of litigation with the school because no one does anything about bullying. Perhaps now that is spreading to the teachers they might take some real action.

Perhaps getting policing authority involved is the answer, in as much as the teachers authority is too often contested by the parents.

Some of us remember when you were in trouble in school and a call went home about it, the "worst was yet to come".

Some of us remembered that in one university parent orientation that the Dean of Students pointed out that it was not "your" child that was the problem, it was the child of the "parents" next to you.