Substitute Teacher Resigns After Telling Classroom Of Mostly Black Students MLK Killed Himself

Substitute Teacher Resigns After Telling Classroom Of Mostly Black Students MLK Killed Himself

One parent said the music instructor also said the kids' clothing "marked them for prison."

Published February 13, 2019

A North Carolina substitute teacher resigned after she allegedly told a predominantly Black classroom of 10-year-old students that Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. killed himself and that his assassination was a myth.

According to the News & Observer, several parents at Rand Road Elementary complained to the Wake County school system after the substitute music teacher made several offensive comments in class on Friday. On Sunday, the teacher told the district she no longer wanted to be in Wake’s database as a substitute teacher, according to Lisa Luten, a spokeswoman.

Billy Byrd, a Rand Road parent who posted about the teacher’s remarks, said he immediately knew something was wrong when he picked up his 10-year-old son, Nathan, on Friday.

Byrd said the substitute teacher began speaking about President Trump and told the students that they weren’t real Christians if they didn’t support the controversial president.

Things quickly took a more egregious turn when the teacher said Martin Luther King Jr. wasn’t assassinated but committed suicide.

“We had to draw the line there,” Nathan told the News & Observer. “All the things she was telling us were completely wrong. We had to tell her, ‘Nothing you’re saying is making any sense.’”

Byrd said he’s “eternally grateful” his son challenged the teacher’s false assertions about MLK.

However, Byrd said the teacher then became more frustrated and told Nathan and Black boys that they were marked for prison because they were wearing athletic apparel. 

“We felt discriminated,” Nathan said. “But at the same time, we can’t let her get to us, because what she’s saying was not true. We had to stand up for ourselves.”

Byrd said he immediately went to Rhonda Jones, the school’s principal, on Friday to complain about what had happened. Byrd said Jones, whom he praised as being a good principal, told him that parents of several other students in the class had also complained.

Byrd’s Facebook post about the incident also went viral.

“To wear athletic apparel while being BLACK is obviously a MARK for long term imprisonment these days by racist radicals portraying to be godly and upright conservative Christians,” Byrd wrote in the Facebook post.

Written by BET Staff

(Photo: ABC 13)


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