Sarasota school safety monitor fired after altercation with student

A newly-hired school safety monitor at Sarasota's Riverview High School has been let go after an altercation with a student, according to school officials. 

Kenneth Howard was new to the job and was still being trained, but when a student acted out Thursday afternoon, Sarasota County school officials said Howard acted incorrectly. 

Sarasota County Schools' assistant superintendent and acting CEO, Jody Dumas said the incident was caught on camera.

"We could see the interaction with the employee and the student raise from some comments to a verbal altercation," said Dumas. 

The video has not been released, but Dumas described it as a verbal altercation that lasted minutes before it turned physical. 

Sarasota school police and the Department of Children and Families are investigating. It’ll be up to them to determine if charges will be filed against Howard.

Howard had been one the job for one month. Dumas said Howard was still being trained on de-escalation techniques.

"He was slated for additional training in the next few days and unfortunately we did not get to that point," said Dumas. 

Howard volunteered with Sarasota High School, Booker High, and Riverview High as a football coach. 
The district said he was respected and well-liked. 

"This is why this was a very difficult decision on our part. Somebody who has worked with students for a number of years made a mistake and it’s just a difficult decision to make," said Dumas. 

The investigation has not wrapped up, but some parents said his actions have no place on campus. 

"Nothing gets solved with violence...Maybe he was just having a bad day, but it’s not right to do that to a child," said parent Elizabeth Smith.