MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A Miramar middle-schooler is recovering from spinal surgery after he says he was body-slammed at school.
Taishawn Yee spent a week in the hospital following the incident late last month at New Renaissance Middle School.
“I cry sometimes. I feel upset because I say to myself, ‘I wasn’t born with metal inside me, but now I have it’,” Yee says of the titanium pins put in his neck to help him heal.
He now has a large scar on the back of his neck to remind him of what happened.
Yee, and 8th grader, says students were showing off their strength on April 28th by lifting each other off the ground.
The students were given free time after a day of FCAT testing to do with as the please, Yee explained.
He says one boy took it too far, lifting him without permission just as they were getting ready to leave school to board the bus.
“I feel somebody come up behind me, grab me by the waist, then it happened so fast. They slammed me to the floor,” Yee said. “I woke up and felt my left hand was completely numb. I couldn’t move it at all.”
Yee was rushed to the hospital where doctors told his mother he had fractured three vertebrae in his neck.
“Seeing him go into surgery that morning, that was not easy. I didn’t know if he was going to make it, but thank God he did,” Yee’s mother, Angella Hines, said.
Hines says she believes the school was negligent.
“I don’t think there was enough supervision there,” Hines said. “That’s why I have an attorney.”
A Broward County Public Schools spokesperson says the district confirms this was a “horseplaying incident” that’s currently under investigation.
The boy was suspended, and the board is recommending expulsion, according to the spokesperson.
Yee says the boy, who he only knows as “Jason”, was removed from class for another incidence days before the altercation.
“Why would you do this to me,” he asked of the boy. “I didn’t bother you.
Yee hopes his experience sparks change at the school.
“My school is outlawed. Students run the place,” Yee said. “That’s how I feel.”
Yee won’t be able to return to school to finish out the year. His plans to volunteer with animals this summer have also been put on hold.
For now, he’s glad his injuries weren’t any worse.
“I would have been paralyzed. Thank God I wasn’t. Or I could have been dead. That’s what the doctor told me,” he said.
Yee was not able to finish all of his FCAT testing. He hopes that doesn’t pose a problem as he transitions to high school in the fall.