Two teachers have plead guilty to running a ‘fight club’ for children at the day care center where they worked.
Erica Kenny, 22, and Chanese White, 29, plead guilty in court on Thursday to encouraging young children under their supervision to fight attack each other in scenes similar to the ‘fight club’ depicted in the 1999 hit film starring Brad Pitt and Edward Norton.
According to Union County prosecutors, the two former workers at the Lightbridge Academy day care center in Cranford, New Jersey, encouraged children between the ages of four and six to push and shove each other in the schoolyard.
Incredibly Kenny is then said to have recorded these scuffles on her phone and shared them on social media, NJ Advance Media reported.
In the video clips, Kenny is heard referring to these activities as a ‘fight club.’
The two women entered the guilty pleas as part of an agreement with prosecutors, who will make their recommendations as to what punishment they should receive during a court hearing next month.
A spokesperson for the prosecutor’s office told NJ Advance Media that both women pleaded guilty to one count of fourth-degree child abuse.
They are due to be sentenced on October 14.
The day care center issued a statement acknowledging an incident from this past August 13, when Kenny and White were urging children to push and shove each other as they were playing in a fenced-in playground.
‘As parents and caregivers, we are shocked and saddened by this isolated incident,’ a Lightbridge spokesperson told NJ.com.
‘We have a zero tolerance policy for anyone who acts in conflict with the core value of Lightbridge Academy – the safety and well being of children.’
One parent whose child was enrolled in a class taught by White and Kenny said she was alarmed by the news.
‘It’s really freaking me out at the moment,’ the parent, Danielle Frost of Union, New Jersey, told NJ Advance Media.
‘I want to go home and ask my son if he saw anything like this. He came home with a broken finger once, and now I’m worried about what happened while he was there.’
Lightbridge offers parents an opportunity to watch a live feed of lessons in the classrooms, although there are no cameras installed in the playgrounds.
That will change, academy officials say.