Hillary Clinton says she's "very disturbed" by a video that shows a South Carolina school resource officer forcibly removing a student from her desk.
"Well, I feel very disturbed by what we have all seen," the former secretary of state said of the video in an interview with radio host Joe Madison on SiriusXM that aired Monday. "And violence of any kind has no place in any school, and the adults in a school should be modeling appropriate behavior to deal with any disciplinary issues that might arise and that was clearly not the case in the incident we have seen in the school in South Carolina."
Several videos taken last week at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, South Carolina show a school resource officer forcibly removing a student from her desk and throwing her across the floor. The officer has been terminated, and the Department of Justice has opened a civil rights investigation of the incident.
"I think there are several problems here," Clinton added. "One is, we need to make sure that all the adults, in any school, whatever the role they play, have sufficient awareness and training and understand alternatives to dealing with kids that might be difficult."
Clinton said that even though she didn't know the facts surrounding the incident, the officer's behavior was not justified. She said it was important to understand how to better deal with kids who have different challenges in their lives.
"One of big concerns should be that black children are disciplined much more frequently. They're suspended and expelled from school much more frequently, so clearly there is something that is not working right," Clinton said.
"We've got to have a greater awareness that the adults in kids lives today," Clinton added, citing institutions like school, family, and law enforcement that need to understand the challenges kids are facing.
"It's one of the reason I am huge proponent of early intervention into families, so that if there are problems in the family, if there are developmental problems with the children, there is a way to help support getting the kind of expert assistance or changing the behavior," she stated. "Well that's just as true for school. We need to deal with the world that we're in.
"I know a lot of adults claim that kids aren't as respectful. That they don't follow authority. Well the fact is we are responsible in many ways for modeling the behavior we want from our children."
Clinton said people in positions of authority need to take a "very hard look" about how they deal with kids problems.
"There's a lot of alternatives then to picking them up and throwing them on the ground."
Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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