A California high school teacher was arrested Thursday on suspicion of felony child endangerment after allegedly forcibly cutting a student’s hair as she sang the national anthem.
Margaret Gieszinger, a teacher at University Preparatory High School in Visalia, can be seen on video cutting a boy’s hair and belting out the “Star Spangled Banner” in class. The minute-long recording, which was posted to Reddit on Wednesday, was verified to NBC News by College of the Sequoias Chief of Police Kevin Mizner.
In the video, Gieszinger flings chunks of the boy’s hair behind her as she sings. When the boy stands up to leave, the teacher threatens to pick other students to go next. The video ends with students running outside after Gieszinger grabs a girl’s long hair and the girl jerks away.
Tulare County Superintendent of Schools Jim Vidak said in a statement Thursday that counselors were sent to the school for students in the wake of the incident.
“We take very seriously the safety of the students in classrooms and on the [College of the Sequoias] campus,” the statement said. “We move decisively when questions of inappropriate and unprofessional conduct are brought to the attention” of the administration.
Gieszinger was removed from her classroom and replaced by a substitute teacher, according to Vidak’s statement.
She is being held at a detention facility on a $100,000 bond and is due to appear in court Friday, according to the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office.