Deborah Alexander Alford

Former Westside Elementary special education teacher Deborah Alford to face jury trial on charges later this summer.

A special education teacher who was charged with felony cruelty to children back in February officially lost her job during the Board of Education’s personnel actions earlier in the month.

Board members approved a list of personnel

transactions during their May 2 session that included the termination of Deborah Alexander Alford, 58, of a Ford Valley

Road address in Gadsden, Alabama, from her position at Westside Elementary School.

Interim Superintendent Greg Teems had no comment citing the decision as a personnel matter.

The termination was official as of April 26, according to the board’s personnel list approved.

Alford was indicted by a grand jury in Polk County on the charges in late January and arrested on February 9 on four felony counts of cruelty to children in the first degree, maliciously causing excessive pain; one count of cruelty to children in the first degree; and misdemeanor battery.

She is expected to have a jury trial in late August, with a backup date at the beginning of September according to Tallapoosa Circuit Assistant District Attorney Jordan Stover.

Alford is accused of having used abusive behavior in the class­room following reports made to the school resource officer at Westside Elementary according to previous statements made by Cedartown Police Chief Jamie Newsome.

Previously Alford had been arrested following the warrants on the charges being drawn in the Gadsden area and was later extradited back to Polk County to face the allegations.

Alford had been employed as a Georgia educator for more than two decades, 19 years of that spent in special education within the Polk School District.

She was previously placed on administrative leave following her arrest on Feb. 9.