Long Beach Teacher Fired for Abusing Special Needs Students

Matthew Forte

In 2014, teacher Lisa Weitzman was suspended from her job at Long Beach Middle School for accusations of abusing special needs student in her class. She denied that any abuse had ever happened, and was put on paid leave, amassing over $540,000 the last five years.

Weitzman was found guilty of three of the eight charges. She locked students in the school bathroom to give them timeouts. She also gave students Motrin pain reliever as a way to calm them down. Lastly, she grabbed a student and harshly pushed him against a wall. There are multiple accounts from former students and teaching assistants of her physically and psychologically abusing students.

Last Tuesday, the state finally gave permission to the school board to fire her. Hearing officer Robert Grey stated that Weitzman “irreparably shattered the bonds of trust that are integral to employment as a teacher for the District. This is especially true for a special education teacher of undisputedly vulnerable, non-verbal students with severe disabilities.”