September 15, 2021
This month a teacher prevented a potentially dangerous situation when she jumped into a moving car. The vehicle began rolling toward a group of students but fortunately was stopped before it reached them.
A New Jersey teacher recently made headlines after stopping a car headed toward a group of pupils standing outside their school. It was the first day back at school, and the students were standing on a sidewalk.
Valerie Tauriello, a health and physical education teacher at Soehl Middle School in Linden, noticed the moving car and did not hesitate to jump into action. She was on drop-off duty when the incident occurred.
STUDENTS COULD HAVE BEEN INJURED
A hurried father quickly ran into the school to give his child an iPad which they had forgotten. A few moments later, his SUV began rolling. Tauriello explained that people could have been injured had things turned out different.
She added some insight into the experience from her perspective:
"Without hesitation, I just had to jump into action and stop that moving car from running into the school or injuring the kids.”
BLESSED TO HAVE HER
Tauriello tried to get the father's attention, but she quickly ran around the car when he failed to reply. She expressed: “So I figured I’m the only one who can get to this car right now.” Her colleagues commended her quick reaction.
Her actions have been called heroic by many people but not everyone agrees.
The school principal, Gwendolyn Long, described Tauriello as a teacher who sees the pupils as her own kids. Long added that the school was blessed to have her on staff because she always put the students first.
JUMPED INTO ACTION QUICKLY
In the clip, Tauriello, the head coach of the Linden High School softball team, could be seen wearing a supportive boot from an injury. This didn't prevent the teacher from running around the white SUV immediately and jumping into the car.
Tauriello said she was frozen at first and explained she was not a fast runner. However, she knew somebody would get hurt if she didn't act. At the end of the clip, the driver also sprinted toward the car and began to push against its front end.
THE ONLINE REACTION
The footage was captured thanks to the school's security camera. Her actions have been called heroic by many people, but not everyone agrees. Netizens have pointed out that the car was moving very slowly and the danger factor was not that big.
One user said: "If any of those kids couldn't avoid being hit by a car rolling 1 mph ..... I think that school has much bigger problems." Another added a similar sentiment: "You're telling me they couldn’t have moved ???"