Teacher charged after brutally attacking and stomping on special needs student's head

A high school teacher in Texas has been charged with aggravated assault after she was filmed brutally attacking a 15-year-old special needs student.

The horrifying footage shows substitute teacher Tiffani Shadell Lankford, 32, repeatedly striking the student before throwing her to the floor. She is then filmed stomping on the teen's head, screaming at her and walking away. 

Footage of the assault has been widely circulated on social media, with some records of the attack showing the student striking Lankford before she launched into the sickening assault.

A report released by the Hays County Sheriff's Office said the assault took place at 3:44pm on November 8 (local time) at Lehman High School in Kyle, Texas.

"The incident involved a guest teacher and a 15-year-old female student. The deputies arrived and after interviewing several students and reviewing several videos, the teacher was placed into custody and charged with aggravated assault," said the report.

According to the Sheriff's Office, the victim was taken to hospital by her father and Lankford was transported to the local jail. 

A case record said Lankford was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, a second-degree felony.

Lankford was fired immediately from her role as a substitute teacher following the incident.

Tiffani Lankman.
Tiffani Lankman. Photo credit: Hays County Jail

The teen's family have since released a statement to local outlet KVUE.

"We are shocked and disgusted after seeing the abuse and excessive force used in this teacher's attempt to discipline a special needs child," said the family's lawyer, Paul Batrice, on behalf of the family.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott weighed in on the incident on Twitter, calling the teacher's actions "heinous".

"The school district will be investigated by the Texas Education Agency," he wrote.

Hays County Jail record shows that Lankford was released on Saturday (local time) after posting US$10,000 (NZ$15,755) bond.