A substitute teacher has been fired after a video showing him slamming a student to the ground was revealed.
The incident reportedly happened on Jan. 23 at Richmond High School in Richmond, California.
The substitute teacher — who is Black — is seen on the video slamming the student to the ground and then throwing him out of the classroom after the student called him the N-word. The incident happened during an Intro to Ethnic Studies class for freshman students.
The student is also seen pushing the teacher away as the teacher confronted him about the racial slur with his hands behind his back. The student could be heard saying, “I’m not playing with you, Bro,” as he shoved the teacher twice. The class could be heard gasping after the teacher grabbed the student and threw him down as he said, “Say it again. Say it again.”
The teacher was immediately fired, and hundreds of students participated in a peaceful protest led by the Black Student Union on the day following the incident. The students were protesting the use of the N-word on campus.
Markeith Anderson is a junior at the high school and claimed that the word is often used at the school. “It wasn’t right for that word to get used,” said Anderson. “It gets tossed around on campus.”
Another student, senior Leonie Goff, claimed that the teacher was pushed to his limit with the racial slur. “I think [the teacher] was just at his limit because at Richmond High, that word does get tossed around a lot, so we just want to stop it.”
Student Rogelio Casillas disagreed with how the teacher handled being called the racial slur.
“There is no justifying it,” said Casillas. “I just think he could have taken better precautions like calling the principal or some other authority. It was a bad move. I’ll say that.” However, Casillas also complimented the teacher. “He was a pretty cool guy from when he substituted in my classroom.”
Footage of the incident made its way across social media platforms on Wednesday, and viewers were divided on if the teacher should face charges.
“Took it too far? Yes. Would I have probably done the same? Yes,” noted one Instagram reader. “FR These kids nowadays are so disrespectful to adults,” replied another user.
“These ‘grown kids are hiding behind the protection of their parents but really have the worst intentions. Sure it was wrong but am I mad about it? Nope. Lay his ass out,” added another person. Another user wrote, “These kids gon learn today !!!!!”
“It really don’t matter,” said one user.” You don’t put your hands on someone else child like that. Teacher was wrong.”
“Students can be disrespectful, but the teacher should’ve de-escalated the situation,” noted another online viewer.
One viewer seemed to understand both sides of the argument. “I mean it ain’t right but it ain’t wrong. If you understand.”
The Richmond police are currently investigating, and it remains unclear if the teacher will be charged with a crime. According to Sgt. Donald Patchin, the district attorney’s office, will decide if any charges will be brought after the police hand over their findings. The teacher could be charged with a felony or misdemeanor battery.
The West Contra Costa School District released a statement noting an investigation was pending. “The student is safe with their family, and our school and district are fully investigating the incident.”