Cellphone video shows the math teacher pushing 15-year-old student Marlina Martinez at Cesar Chavez High School. Punches were thrown, and at one point, Martinez says she was thrown to the ground.
Martinez was arrested by school police for assault. She has been suspended for five days and faces expulsion.
School district officials say the teacher was injured and is on paid leave.
According to Martinez, the fight was over makeup. Her teacher took it away, so she called her mom on her cellphone to demand the teacher give it back.
"She pushed me and then she started going like (swings). Right after she pushed me, she started hitting me," Martinez said. When asked what she did next, she replied, "I hit her back."
School officials say an investigation is under way into the incident.