Joan Naydich, attacked by a student in February, remains on unpaid leave, facing financial strain and lasting injuries. A GoFundMe by friend Jessica has raised $117,000, highlighting Naydich's resilience.
Teacher Beaten Unconscious By Student After Stopping Him Playing Video Games Says She's Forced To Live Off Donations
Joan Naydich claims that even after several months after the attack, she is still on unpaid leave.
In February, Brendan Depa, a 270-lb student, viciously attacked and knocked Naydich out.
The 17-year-old attacked Naydich after she forbade him from using his Nintendo Switch in class.
A terrifying video of the incident at Matanzas High School in Florida shows Depa striking Naydich in the head and back and slamming her to the ground.
The teenager kept trying to kick her as he was being pulled away.
Depa was taken into custody after the incident, and he has since entered a guilty plea to an aggravated battery first-degree felony charge.
In January, Judge Terrence Perkins will decide on his punishment during a hearing.
It's alleged that Naydich wants the teenager to spend up to 30 years in prison.
After the tragedy, Naydich experienced both financial and physical difficulties, which she discussed with Fox 35: "I was attacked on February 21st and I feel like I'm just constantly being attacked."
She continued by saying that her life had been "turned upside down" and that she was a "totally different person now."
"Unfortunately, a lot of my injuries that are not visible I'm going to have for the rest of my life," Naydich added.
Naydich revealed to the source that she has been having financial difficulties while trying to get her workers' compensation lawsuit settled.
In August, she went back to work with a new title, but a few days later, she says she was placed on unpaid leave.
According to Naydich, she is currently subsisting on contributions from generous individuals as she looks for alternative employment.
Over $117,000 had been raised for the teacher as of this writing.
Naydich's friend created the GoFundMe page.
She penned on the page: "My name is Jessica and I've had the privilege of getting to know Joan through our kids' bowling team for Matanzas HS for the last six years!”
"February 21, 2023, Joan was brutally attacked by a student as she tried to leave a classroom. The video has gone viral so I'm sure you've seen or heard about it!”
"Joan is a mom of two! Her son is a senior and her daughter graduated from Matanzas HS in 2013.”
"She's been working two jobs to care for her family. Her heart is huge in all she does for others!"
Naydich's friend continued by calling her "humble" and "never asks for help."