Teacher Tirade Caught On Student Cell Phones - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Teacher Tirade Caught On Student Cell Phones

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by Brent Frazier

WHITE HOUSE, Tenn. - The latest teacher tirade to be caught on at least two students' cell phones is convincing enough to get a veteran educator placed on unpaid administrative leave.

"It's very disappointing to the administration of the school system that a teacher would act this way and speak this way to students," said Danny Weeks, Ed.D., assistant director of Robertson County Schools.

Weeks was referring to Friday's verbal, after-school outburst from Andrew Larson, a physical science teacher at White House Heritage High School. Larson is a tenured teacher and coach, who is enjoying widespread support while this controversy plays out.

"You come in here, giggling like a d*** 3rd-grade girl," Larson said in the recorded audio. "What's up with that? You guys got zeros. I'm throwing them in the trash! Zeros! And if you come in here with that s***-a** attitude again, I'm going to throw your next assignment in the trash. And I'm going to see you little punk-a**** the next nine weeks. Are you with me? I said, Are you with me??!"

Larson was speaking to three freshman boys at the conclusion of school at 3 p.m. Friday. What Larson likely did not realize is that 14-year-old Nathan Walker and 15-year-old Austin Green were recording this teacher tirade on their cell phones.

"It made me feel scared," Nathan admitted to NewsChannel 5, standing in his own Robertson County neighborhood.

Nathan described the teacher as having a military background, being a "pretty big man," and the experience, he said, was "pretty intense."

The trio of freshman boys never took the after-school tongue lashing that seriously, but their mothers and fathers did. Now, it's the parents who are taking this audible outburst to the next level and demanding something be done with the teacher and coach.

"The kids in no way wanted to take Coach Larson down," said Angela Walker, one of the mothers. "He's one of their favorite teachers."

"I definitely think he needs to be suspended, I think he needs some anger management," added Nichole Fentress, another Mom joining the fight, with Walker. "He's got some major issues."

No one wants the teacher and coach to lose his job, but allowing him to go without reprimand, according to the families, is like positively reinforcing bullying.

"He was both apologetic and remorseful for what he did," said Weeks, assistant director of schools, on Larson's behalf. "We'll continue to have those conversations as the week progresses."

Weeks said Larson has a squeaky clean personnel file, which is a sentiment echoed by his previous employer.

"We remember him as a mild mannered person," said Eldon Merrell, superintendent of the Duncan Unified School District in Duncan, Arizona, Larson's previous employer.

Though Merrell admitted to NewsChannel 5 he was not superintendent during Larson's teaching stint, he recalled him as a "pleasant" man and a high school basketball coach who took the team to the state championship.

Andrew Larson is getting much praise here in middle Tennessee, too, even during this most controversial time. Danny Weeks said the school system will continue to explore the facts, possibly re-interview some witnesses, and make a decision regarding Larson's fate as a staffer, possibly by the end of the week.

Email: bfrazier@newschannel5.com

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