Paraprofessional fired after being accused of slapping student

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Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- News 12 has learned the paraprofessional accused of slapping a student across the face has been fired.

The Richmond County School System says Sharla Tomberlin was fired from A. Brian Merry Elementary, effective Jan. 9.

One of the witnesses says Tomberlin grabbed the student's face. When the student continued to yell, she allegedly said, "I am not your momma," and slapped the student.

Superintendent Frank Roberson said in a letter to Tomberlin, "While students may become defiant and need redirecting, your actions were neither suitable nor justified under any reasonable circumstance."

The letter goes on to say, "The misconduct of a student does not excuse you, an adult, from remaining calm, professional and personally detached. There is no justification for allowing a discipline issue to become escalated beyond any reasonable relation to the underlined conduct of the student." Click here to read the full termination letter.

The school says the principal immediately contacted the Central Office to start an investigation with the Department of School Safety and Security after the incident.

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