It’s never too late for your shitty ways to catch up with you, and a Uniondale (N.Y.) High School health teacher is learning that the hard way after being removed from the classroom after bragging on a Facebook post that he had failed two students more than a decade ago partially because they would not stand for the Pledge of Allegiance.
Needless to say, as Newsday reports, the post by 58-year-old Steven Solomon resulted in swift and immediate backlash. But, apparently, never one to quit while ahead, Solomon instead doubled down and defended his inexcusable actions, saying that he was trying to teach a lesson in patriotism that is currently being misunderstood in today’s world.
“These kids failed themselves,” Solomon claimed, adding that the students’ refusal to stand for the pledge was only part of the reason he failed them. He told Newsday that the students were mediocre and had behavioral issues.
“They had a 63 or 62 ... less than passing,” Solomon said. “They did not stand for the pledge. That was part of the component, and it’s the teacher’s discretion at that point whether they want to pass them or not.
“But if a kid doesn’t stand for the pledge, who said he doesn’t care if these military people live or die, who doesn’t respect his peers and is a discipline problem in the classroom—why should I reward this kid?” he added.
Wow, what a douchebag.
The controversial Facebook post, according to the report, referred to the students as “suckers” and “unpatriotic.”
But what is posted online is your own damn problem, and members of the public quickly contacted the school district, which took action.
“The school district is aware of a teacher posting on social media about a situation involving grades and standing for the Pledge of Allegiance that occurred more than a decade ago,” Superintendent William Lloyd said in a statement Wednesday. “The district has taken the proactive measure of assigning this faculty member to out-of-classroom duties until further investigation into the matter can be completed. The district will make available any information that is uncovered that can legally and responsibly be released to the public.”
Still, despite the ridiculousness of it all, Solomon is still a white man, and he was suspended with pay.
And after all the backlash, Solomon has seemed to backtrack on his shitty actions just a bit, claiming that he didn’t make the kids stand, even though his Facebook status stated that he “required” the students he failed to do so.
“I didn’t make them stand. They didn’t stand. They sat,” he said. “I encouraged them to stand and I said your standing is just a respect for the country, the flag and for the military people that risked their lives to fight to protect your freedom.”
Read more at Newsday.