The Apopka Police Department arrested a local daycare worker yesterday for striking a 4-year-old child on the arm with a ruler.
Janet Gainer, 54 of Apopka, was arrested on Thursday and charged with cruelty towards a child and transported to the Orange County Jail. Gainer is employed by The Learning Tree Academy in Apopka.
On Tuesday, the APD responded jointly with the Department of Children and Families to investigate the allegation of the 4-year-old being struck twice on the upper arm with a ruler while in Gainer’s care at the daycare. Through interviews and physical evidence it was determined the child was in fact hit with a ruler by Gainer.
On Wednesday, a Child Protection Team concluded that the child was a victim of physical abuse. According to their report, the bruises, square shape, and measuring 4×2 cm were consistent with marks left from a ruler.
According to the APD arrest report, Gainer denied hitting the child with a ruler, but did admit to “popping” her on the hand because the child was hitting other children.
According to The Learning Tree Academy’s parent handbook, physical punishment is not allowed on the premises by staff or any other person. Gainer has been employed by the school since 2016 as a teacher assistant.