Monday, January 30, 2017

How A History Teacher Gets Fired

Commentary at end.

0-year-old Sutter Middle School (Folsom, CA) teacher Woody Hart hanged both a Confederate flag and a Union flag during his lesson on the Civil War.
In a public statement (via the Sacramento Bee), Folsom Cordova Unified School District made suggested that he may have hung up the flag for some reason other than to teach the history lesson.
“We recognize that regardless of context, to many of our students, families, and staff, the Confederate flag is a racist symbol of hate,” the statement reads. “Although this matter is under investigation, it is important to reiterate: Any employee who is found to engage in behavior that creates an unsafe environment for students will face full consequences, including the possibility of initiating termination proceedings.”
“In this case, the flag — which was found across the room from a Civil War Union flag, potentially in preparation of a history activity — was removed from the classroom before school began today,” it continues. “It is our schools’ responsibility to provide a safe learning environment for all children.”
The school district also announced Hart’s “retirement.”
I recall in the final days of my career as a teacher of juniors in advanced placement American History in the mid-1980's. We happened to be studying World War II. You should know I didn't teach revisionist history. The students were taught the dropping of the Atom Bombs were justified and given reasons why. in addition, on the walls of my classroom I hung the flags of the United States, the Empire of Japan, Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy along with those of Great Britain and France. Not once was I threatened with expulsion. Thank goodness for me. I would have told the administration and the School Board to shove it where the sun don't shine. But hey, that's the way I am.

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