Belleview, Florida — On May 14, 2014, Christina Cochran, 30, of Summerfield, was arrested and booked into the Marion County Jail for making a bomb threat.
This incident started when Belleview Middle School officials called Cochran to talk about her child. A Marion County Sheriff’s Office School Resource Officer could hear the call, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
School officials told Cochran her child needed help and needed to be taken to the ‘Centers,’ because the child had allegedly made threats. The school said that’s when Cochran started using profanity and made the threat to “blow up the school.”
The Principal of the school said that Cochran said,”You can suspend my kid because I am not taking him back to the ‘Centers’, I am about to blow this fu**ing school up..I am tired of this s**t.”
Law enforcement made contact with Cochran at her home, where the deputy says she admitted to making the statement.
She was arrested and charged with Threat to Throw, Project, Place, or Discharge a Destructive Device.
Cochran was released on $5,000 bond.
[Updated May 15, 2014 at 4:35 p.m.]
In a hour interview with Cochran, as tears rolled down her cheeks, she told Ocala Post about what she feels is abuse of power from within the school system as well as a lack of teaching.
Cochran said that she has been to multiple meetings with staff from Belleview Middle in regards to her son and has been fighting with them for at least two years because they are not meeting her sons requirements.
She said her son, Anthony Cochran, 14, whom is in 7th grade is “Development Delayed.” She said when he was in the 5th grade he tested on a kindergarten reading level.
Since the time Anthony was enrolled into Belleview Middle it has been a nightmare she said.
On May 14, 2014, Cochran said she received a call from Mr. Williams, the Dean of the school. During the phone call she said that Williams told her that her son “needed help” and he advised that she needed to take him to the ‘Centers’ to be re-evaluated. Anthony had already been evaluated by the ‘Centers’ on a previous date.
Cochran told Ocala Post that she said, “I’m sick of this f***ing s**t, I’ve gotten to the point that I am going to blow up on the school.” Adding, “I never said I was going to ‘blow up’ the school.”
“The school and deputies are getting my words twisted and trying to put words in my mouth,“ she said.
Cochran said that she is not surprised, “This is what the school does.”
She said her son had an accident, and as a result of the accident he was required to wear a colostomy bag for four (4) months. She said surgeons were finally able to reverse it and remove the bag, but not without side effects. She said that her son has to make frequent trips to the bathroom and constantly “has gas.” Cochran said that the school has all the documentation on her sons condition, yet she constantly receives phone calls from teachers “tattling” on her son for using the bathroom three to four times during a single class. “It’s ridiculous, the school staff act like they are in kindergarten,” she said.
“At the beginning of the school year my son was suspended for farting in class, that is how ridiculous the school system has become. And then Florida wants to know why the dropout rate is so high.” said Cochran. “Another time the school called me in and said that my son had accidentally thrown his lunch tray in the trash and they tried to make him dig it out after it had other food dumped on it. My son said he didn’t want to stick his hands in the nasty trash, so they called me to remove him from school for the remainder of the day.”
As Cochran held back tears, she said, “I love my kids more than anything in the world. I am a stay at home mom and my husband works full time..so I do what stay at home moms are supposed to do. I take care of the kids, the house and tend to my children’s education. Education is very important to me and I want my kids to receive a good education. I am not one of those parents that just sits home and does nothing. I have made phone call, after phone call, and been to meeting, after meeting with no results. I don’t know what else to do, where to go or who to turn too.”
“I have asked the school so many times to help me and all they can say is my son has “issues” and that I should send him to the ‘Centers’,” said Cochran.
She said, “I requested that my son be placed in special classes and they told me he is not “Retarded” enough to qualify for placement in those classes. I then asked if he could be placed in what Belleview Middle calls “self contained” classes. The school then came back to me and told me that my sons GPA was too high.” She added, “My sons education is being penalized from both directions. In one hand they are basically saying he is not “Retarded” enough and in the other that he is not “stupid” enough to receive a proper education that the school is required by law to offer for children with learning disabilities. Every answer from the school is I can’t, or take him to the ‘Centers’.”
Cochran said that she feels like the school is not equipped nor are the teachers properly trained to teach kids with learning disabilities. She said she is not asking for special treatment, just to be treated fairly. She said as a mother she will protect her son from being singled out and being made to feel like he is an outcast.
“Any decent mother would do the same for their own child, no one wants their child singled out, picked on or made to feel like they are inadequate,“ said Cochran.
She said in her heart she feels like the school is intentionally trying to force her son out of the school because he has a learning disability and they don’t want to deal with it.
School officials told Cochran that her son cannot return to the school until he is re-evaluated by the ‘Centers’.
Cochran said she is looking into her options for legal action.
Belleview Middle School would not comment.