A Missouri mother has filed a lawsuit against a daycare center after video showed the staff encouraging the toddlers to participate in a fight club for preschoolers.
In December 2016, the heater broke at Adventure Learning Center and, in an attempt to entertain the kids, one teacher led a fight club. A student, who was 10 years old at the time, captured video of the fighting with his iPad. He was in a room with older kids and began recording when he noticed his brother crying after three fights.
In the video, one teacher excitedly jumps up and down while another teacher puts hulk fists on preschoolers.
Mother Nicole Merseal told Fox 2 she cannot watch the video without crying.
“He doesn`t understand why his friends were fighting him -- why he was beaten up by his best friends. And it was on his 4th birthday.”
The iPad video shows a fight in which the kids fall to the ground while a teacher kicks into the air in excitement. The only person who tries breaking it up is another preschooler. Merseal believes it only stopped because her older son texted her video, prompting her to call the director to stop it.
Though it happened nearly two years ago, Merseal doesn't think enough was done and has filed a lawsuit against the center for $25,000, reported Daily Mail.
“I want them to be held accountable and I don`t want this to happen to any other child.”
According to a police report, the director immediately fired both teachers and called the child abuse hotline. The St. Louis Circuit Attorney`s Office declined to prosecute due to insufficient evidence proving laws were broken.
Merseal also questioned if the staff was trained properly. In the video, she noticed a teacher downplaying her son's emotional response to the fighting.
“In the video, he`s wiping his face over and over again. The daycare worker - you see her walk over to him and tell him, you know - you`re fine and you know - pat him on the back and then walk and start another fight with other kids.”
She says now she struggles making her son realize fighting at daycare is not widely accepted.
“When we chose a new daycare for him and he started going he asked me in the car if they were going to make him fight,” Merseal said.
(Photo: Fox 2 St. Louis)