‘Rub my feet, get a treat’; Peoria mother infuriated after her daughter gives teacher foot massage

Local News

PEORIA, Ill. — A Peoria mother said she is furious at her daughter’s first-grade teacher at Dr. Maude A. Sanders Primary after she said her daughter rubbed her teacher’s feet and got candy for it.

Davonna Manuel said she wants disciplinary actions to be taken against the teacher. School administrators are investigating the incident.

“She came home Tuesday, and she was saying, ‘Mom, my teacher said that if we rub her feet, we could get a treat.'”

Manuel said she was furious when she heard this happened. She went to the school to speak with the principal, Dan Hiles.

“I was in disbelief. I was so angry about the situation. First of all, I send my child to go to school to learn and do her work. If you felt like your feet were hurting that bad, you should’ve stayed home,” Manuel said.

“He said there can’t be any actions taken because he’s got to wait until he has all the facts,” Manuel said. “And I’m confused, I’m like, ‘You need the facts? I screenshotted the emails between me and the teacher through ClassDojo.'”

Manual provides us with the screenshots, which show the teacher claiming she made a joke about the kids rubbing her feet due to plantar fasciitis, a foot condition in which the tissue along the bottom of the foot is inflamed. Manuel said her daughter, and three other students volunteered to give her a foot rub.

Later in the conversation, she said she let things go that far and made a mistake.

Manuel said that no matter how it all started, it doesn’t matter to her whose idea it was.

“This shouldn’t have ever taken place in school,” Manuel said. “My child comes to school to learn, not to rub nobody’s feet. Not only that, you are an adult and you are a teacher. You are not supposed to be touching those students and you are not supposed to be allowing no students to touch you.”

Manuel said she asked Hiles if he informed the other parents of the situation.

“He said no and [that] he’s not going to notify them until after the situation gets resolved,” she said.

Peoria Public Schools District 150 sent the following statement:

We are aware of this incident and are currently investigating. As of this morning, we have spoken with all of the parties involved. Since the investigation is ongoing and is a personnel matters, we cannot go into further details.

PPS District 150

Manuel said an apology will not suffice after this, and she wants the teacher to face serious repercussions, including losing her job. She also said she hopes the district administration does not just overlook the situation, and takes it seriously.

Manuel tells WMBD/WYZZ she spoke with the father of one of the other students who rubbed the teacher’s feet. She says he was upset as well.

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