THE BRONX - Students walked out of their Bronx charter school Thursday, with support from parents, against a principal accused of running the school into the ground.

"Why are teachers constantly leaving this school and there are allegations of abuse and things like that. We need answers," a concerned parent said about the International Leadership Charter School.

According to several teachers, who planned to resign but were instead fired, Principal Elaine Ruiz-Lopez is abusive and manipulative. They claimed in a letter to the school's board of trustees that Dr. Ruiz-Lopez has called students "mentally challenged" and has let teachers work without health insurance for months.

"In order to provide an academically rigorous environment and in order to meet the performance goals that have been set forth in our charter, we must have discipline, order and structure," Ruiz-Lopez said about the allegations she describes as exaggerated.The Department of Education issued a statement earlier saying it would investigate the matter and take any necessary action.