VIDEO: Substitute teacher fired for hitting, fighting student

A substitute teacher in Kyle has been let go after a video began circulating on social media of the teacher allegedly hitting a student.  

WARNING: Video contains graphic language and physical violence. 

The incident involving the 15-year-old female student and teacher allegedly happened during a foreign language class at Lehman High School shortly before 4 p.m. on Friday, November 8. In the video, the substitute teacher can be seen hitting the student and pulling her out of her chair.

The teacher also appears to curb stomp the student once she is laying on the floor. 

Deputies with the Hays County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to the high school. After arriving at the scene and reviewing several videos, the teacher was taken into custody. The 15-year-old student was released to her father and brought to a local hospital for evaluation.  

A statement was released on the high school's Facebook page saying that the teacher has been fired. "Under no circumstance is that behavior tolerated at Lehman High School or in Hays CISD. Her actions will also be reported to the Texas Education Agency."

"We take the safety and security of our students seriously," Lehman High School said in a statement released on Facebook. "We took swift action when this incident occurred and will do everything necessary to protect our students."

This afternoon, we fired one of our guest teachers for hitting and fighting with a student. Under no circumstance is that behavior tolerated at Lehman High School or in Hays CISD. Additionally, the former employee was arrested by the Hays County Sheriff’s Office and faces potential criminal charges. Her actions will also be reported to the Texas Education Agency. We take the safety and security of our students seriously. We took swift action when this incident occurred and will do everything necessary to protect our students.

— Karen Zuniga, Principal, Lehman High School

The substitute teacher has been identified as 32-year-old Tiffani Shadell Lankford. She has worked for Hays CISD since August 30 and has been a substitute in a classroom a total of 18 times, including Friday. According to Hays CISD, all substitutes are required to undergo and pass fingerprint criminal background checks in order to work in the classroom.

She was arrested by the Hays County Sheriff’s Office and has been charged with Aggravated Assault, a second-degree felony. 

“We are appalled at the actions of this former employee,” said Tim Savoy, Chief Communication Officer for Hays CISD. “There is absolutely no excuse or circumstance that can justify what you see unfold on the video. It is unconscionable what this adult did to one of our students.” 

If you believe you have information regarding this case contact the Hays County Sheriff’s Office at 512-393-7896 and speak with the Criminal Investigations Division or you may contact the Hays County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-324-TIPS (8477).