Clearwater teacher arrested on child abuse charges

CLEARWATER — A Clearwater teacher faces charges of abusing two special needs students at Skycrest Elementary School.

Police arrested 44-year-old Melanie Jo Fox on Thursday.

The Tampa Bay Times reports Fox is accused of pulling a 6-year-old girl's hair, kicking her, hitting her with a book and binding her with duct tape. Authorities also say she pushed an 8-year-old boy and used rubber bands to bind his hands.

Fox remained in the Pinellas County Jail early Friday. She's being held on $20,000 bail.

Clearwater Public Safety spokeswoman Elizabeth Watts says Fox was arrested after investigators talked with the teacher and students.

Fox has worked for the school district since 2004. School officials say she's been reassigned to a non-student site pending an investigation

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