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Santa Monica High teacher is on leave after fight with student

Educators

A Santa Monica High School teacher was placed on leave Friday after he was caught on a cellphone video in an altercation with a student.

The incident took place in a classroom at the high school and was recorded on cellphone videos by several students, according to the superintendent of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District.

One recording shows Mark Black, a science teacher and wrestling coach, involved in a physical confrontation with an unidentified student. Other students are shown scrambling to avoid the altercation as it continued across the classroom.

According to KTLA, Supt. Sandra Lyon described one of the videos as "utterly alarming" in a letter sent to parents of district students. 

She stated that the "deeply disturbing" event resulted in the police being summoned to the campus.

Although no one was hurt, Lyon wrote that it does not dismiss the seriousness of the incident or her commitment to investigate the matter and take the most appropriate action.

Based on what she viewed on the videos, Lyon told parents that the kind of physical restraint used by the teacher was unacceptable.

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dan.weikel@latimes.com  

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