A cheerleading adviser in Pennsylvania is coming under fire after she allegedly duct taped the mouths of her kids during a practice. Dina Berrios has been fired from her role at Lackawanna Trail High School in Wyoming County but remains a 6th grade teacher at Lackawanna Trail Elementary.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. One Parent Says That Berrios Duct Taped the Mouths of 16 Cheerleaders
WNEP reports that school officials in Lackawanna were first brought to the attention of Berrios alleged action by parents. The station says that one parent was worried about her daughter’s health as she suffers from asthma. Chris Johnson, from the town of Factoryville, where Berrios also lives said “It’s unbelievable, uncalled for. You can’t do that to kids. If it was my daughter, I’d be furious.” WNEP says that Berrios no longer works at Lackawanna Trail High School.
As news of the scandal went public, she posted this statement to her Facebook page:
You can steal my pics, but you can’t steal my heart. My family and friends have a small piece and they are not sharing. Thank you for the kind words and support without even having to defend myself. Oh and by the way…it’s NOT my birthday, but the well wishes are accepted graciously with gratitude.
As I cannot publicly give any statements or comments, I know you will understand. Finally in the words of Taylor Swift…..that’s just what I’m gonna do!
2. Her Teaching Status Is Under Investigation by School Officials
According to WNEP, her teaching status is under investigation by authorities in Lackawanna Trail. In a statement, the district said:
During a cheerleading practice, the adviser, in an exercise in nonverbal communication, placed tape on the cheerleaders’ mouths during the practice. The employee is no longer in her position as cheerleading adviser, beyond that, the district is not at liberty to discuss further.
According to her profile at the Lackawanna Trail website, she’s a graduate of Marywood University and is a reading specialist. She’s worked in the district since March 1994. Berrios writes “I have been the Varsity Football Cheerleading Advisor for our high school. I am also an active member of our HS All Sports Booster Club. I also volunteer on the executive board where my husband is the president of the LT Jr. Lions Football and Cheerleading Organization.”
3. Berrios Took an Active Role With the Cheerleaders, Even Once Taking Them to a Philadelphia 76ers Game
Online records show that Berrios was approved to take her cheerleaders to perform at a Philadelphia 76ers game on March 16, 2015. On her Facebook page, she once advertised for further help with the cheerleaders, in addition to the regular photos she posted of her groups together.
4. Her Son Is on the Lackawanna High School Football Team
Berrios worked as a cheerleading adviser for the varsity football team cheer squad, reports WNEP. Her son, Anthony, plays on the football team. Earlier in November, he was named athlete of the week in the local paper. In the piece he cited his mother as his Biggest Role Model saying “She’s a very independent person and a great person overall.” He’s a junior at Lackawanna High School.
5. Berrios Constantly Pushes a Pyramid Selling Scheme on Her Facebook Page
Berrios constantly updates her Facebook page with new products available from the It Works nutritional supplement series where she works as a reseller with her husband, Carmelo. In 2012, that company was named on a list of schemes that “Lure in Ladies, Then Steal Their Friends, Cash, and Confidence,” by Jezebel.