A Trump-loving substitute teacher deviated from a lesson plan set out for her and told students that the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was not murdered — but instead killed himself.
Billy Byrd, the father of a 10-year-old boy in the music class, said his son and other black students were upset by the teacher singling out their athletic gear as “prison attire” in the classroom, reported WTVD-TV.
The teacher, who was filling in at Rand Road Elementary School in Garner, North Carolina, was supposed to show students a video, but Byrd said his son and some other students were acting rowdy.
That’s when the teacher told students that King’s assassination was a “complete fabrication,” according to Byrd, who is black.
“What book is she reading, and obviously it’s not the right one, and for her to say this to a classroom full of kids, giving them that misinformed information is just bogus,” Byrd said. “We can’t afford to have anybody in the school system that is teaching this damaging rhetoric to any kid — white or black.”
Byrd said the teacher then began preaching an “ultra-conservative” ideology from her interpretation of the Bible, which he said included references to President Donald Trump.
“If you don’t go off the theology that you perceive Donald Trump to be as a Christian, that you’re some way hell-bound or wrong,” Byrd said. “When she brought it to that level, I think that’s when I as a parent, father and African-American say listen this is wrong.”
Byrd reported the teacher’s behavior to school officials, and the Wake County Public School System said her status is “frozen” while the incident was investigated.
The teacher declined requests from the TV station for comment.
Byrd said he was proud of his son, whom he said had been prepared to challenge racism from an authority figure.
“He had those necessary tools that he was equipped with prior to that situation taking place,” Byrd said. “So for him to be able to stand up for truth and to correct that teacher when she made that blatant lie that Dr. King committed suicide, and say, ‘No, that is inaccurate information, that did not happen,’ that made me feel good as a father to know that he followed my instruction. For that, I am eternally proud and grateful.”