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‘She Deserved Every Part of That Lesson’: Student Takes Swing at Substitute Teacher After Her Phone Is Confiscated, Leading to Fight, Police Investigation

Police in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, and Nash County Public Schools are investigating a fight over a cellphone between a substitute teacher and a student at Rocky Mount High School on Monday morning.

A substitute teacher police have identified as Xaviera Steele was recorded by another student in the classroom fighting a teenage girl in a video that went viral online.

Left Photo: Substitute teacher and student getting ready to fight in a classroom; Right Photo: Front of Rocky Mount High School (Photos: Screenshot from a viral video on Twitter & WRAL News Youtube channel)

In the video, the teenager went behind Steele’s desk to confront her about why she was the only student who didn’t get back her cellphone, which had been confiscated by Steele. The verbal altercation led to the student taking a swing at Steele, and then the two begin to exchange punches before tussling on the floor.

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According to WRAL News, Nash County Public Schools said the fight occurred at the end of first period.

“Why does the rules not apply to everybody else?” said the student in the video. “That’s my phone.”

Steele responded, “It does apply to everybody.”

The student proceeded to reach for the phone that Steele was holding in her hand. The teacher was attempting to call the front office for help with the situation.

“Don’t touch me. Girl, don’t touch me,” said Steele in the video. She tries to push the student away and the student took a swing at her.

As the two went to the ground, Steele got on top of the student. She then restrained the student by putting her knee into her back and holding her arms down.

Steele then repeatedly yelled to the other students, “Somebody get a f*****g teacher, get a f*****g teacher.”

“Get off of me,” the student screamed loudly at the end of the video.

The substitute teacher has reportedly been with the school district for approximately a year. As of Monday, no charges had been filed against the teacher, according to WRAL News.

According to reports, NCPS policy states, “If an employee is attacked by a student, the employee has the right to reasonably restrain the student and defend themselves to the point that they are free of the threat or attack.”

The cellphone policy states that “administrators may authorize individual students to use wireless communication devices for personal purposes when there is a reasonable need for such communication.”

Bettie Atcherson, another substitute teacher, spoke with WRAL News about how she handles tense classroom situations with students.

“As the adult, you have to contain yourself and not let them take you that far,” Atcherson said to WRAL News. “If you’re kind to kids, even the toughest kids if you’re kind to them and show that you love them, are concerned about their well-being. … Nine times of 10, you won’t have a lot of problems. But there are always exceptions.”

Reactions on social media were split. Some people were in support of the teacher, and others were in support of the student.

“That girl took the first swing. She deserved every part of that lesson. The teacher understood the assignment,” wrote Vic DeGrammont.

Another user wrote, “The girl was wrong, but the teacher escalated the situation too quickly. She’s supposed to be the adult in the classroom.”

No further updates were released by the school district or local police.

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