'I'm an Idiot': Teacher Who Cops Say Ran Classroom 'Fight Club'
Ryan Avery Fish told police he just wanted to befriend his students
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 13, 2018 8:32 AM CDT

(Newser) – The first rule of fight club is you don't talk about fight club, but that becomes even more imperative if you're a substitute teacher running one out of your high school math class. Whether Ryan Avery Fish, fired in October from Connecticut's Montville High School, initially bragged about the sparring setup cops say he had in his classroom is unclear, but the 23-year-old, arrested Thursday, has since told police he was simply letting his students "be teenagers and get their energy out" and also that he was "immature" and "an idiot [who] wanted to befriend them," reports the Hartford Courant. Fish admitted to allowing at least four fights take place, and a student cellphone video shows Fish during one fight giving students instructions and moving a garbage can out of their way, per his arrest warrant.

The Day reports that school officials were alerted to the alleged fights happening in Fish's classroom on Oct. 10 and fired him that same day. Police weren't brought into the loop, however, until December, when one of the four teen victims, who ranged in age from 14 to 16, told a social worker he'd been robbed and beaten; the social worker went to the cops. One student has told police Fish also tried to get in good with them by letting them draw pictures of male anatomy on the board and dishing about his past drug use, per the warrant. A Montville state trooper says Fish isn't a certified teacher, per Newsweek. Fish, who has been charged with reckless endangerment, risk of injury to a minor, and breach of peace, is out on $75,000 bail and is set to appear in court in early May.

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