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posted: 9/21/2012 4:50 PM

Aurora dance instructor fired for duct taping 8-year-old

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An Aurora dance instructor was fired after she silenced an 8-year-old student with duct tape, the studio's artistic director said Friday.

The incident happened Wednesday evening at Steps Dance Center, 4054 Fox Valley Center Drive, as a parent watched through a window.

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Rebecca Rosenberg, the studio's artistic director, said the instructor covered an 8-year-old girl's mouth with duct tape for "talking out of turn."

She said the parent who witnessed the taping reported it to staff and the instructor was immediately fired.

"We consider the children here like our family and we do our best to look out for them, which is why we took action so quickly," Rosenberg said. "We just want to make sure everybody knows this is not something we would ever tolerate or ever condone."

Rosenberg didn't identify the instructor but described her as a "prominent dancer in the Chicago dance community." The studio hired her on numerous recommendations and after having her teach as a guest. She had been on the job about two weeks.

Rosenberg said the studio contacted the student's family and has reached out to other students and parents.

"Nothing like this has ever happened before," she said, adding the studio has been open more than 12 years. "We keep the blinds up during all of our classes because we're very comfortable with our parents viewing what goes on here. Our biggest concern, first and foremost, is always the safety of the children."

Wednesday's class was attended by a large group of students, according to Rosenberg. Police were not involved, and DuPage County prosecutors said Friday no charges have been filed.

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