Lillian Gomez, a teacher who was accused of force-feeding an autistic student a hot sauce-covered crayon, will return to work, it was reported.
Gomez, from Florida, made headlines last year after she was fired from Sunrise Elementary School in Kissimmee over the incident. She also apparently fed the students Play Doh soaked in hot sauce.
According to ABC, she placed large crayons in a cup of hot sauce and soaked them for several days. She moved the crayons to a bag that had the student in question’s name.
However, Gomez said that she put hot sauce on the crayons and Play Doh to prevent the student from eating them
WFTV reported that a judge ruled that Gomez should get her job back and that the school district can’t do anything about it.
“She proved already that she’s a danger inside a classroom,” parent Jose Holguin told WFTV. “What else can she do to prove to the system that she doesn’t have it?”
ABC reported that the school district spent more than $50,000 in lawyers’ fees to fight her return to the school.
Todd Cinetti, a parent of a child who goes to Sunrise, told the broadcaster: “Maybe she shouldn’t work with children. Maybe she should find another career.”
Gomez’s lawyer, Thomas Egan, said that she was trying to help–not harm–the student.
“I think she made a bad judgment in the way she went about it,” he said. “But her purpose was good.”