Things Just Got Worse for Teacher Who Stomped on the Flag
Lee Francis repeatedly stepped on a U.S. flag in class back in September and he was immediately suspended for it. The suspension was for 10 days and Francis decided to appeal it. bad move. The school held a nine hour, closed door meeting with Francis and other witnesses on the appeal. When it was over the vote was 5-2 to uphold the suspension, but that’s not all. When his suspension is up, he will not report back to the classroom. Instead, he will be working out of the warehouse at least until the first of the year.
Francis says to top it off, he has been told that when his contract is up in 2017, it will not be renewed. That’s still not all. The school could still yank his license to teach. Francis is now looking to find other legal action he could take. His problem is not only that he performed an incredibly stupid act in the classroom, he actually broke the law. In North Carolina, they have a law against desecration of the flag.
Among those to speak out in defense of Francis was former County Commissioner Billy King.
Calling Francis “an excellent teacher,” King argued that he should remain in the classroom because “we continually need black role models in our school system.”
Carrie Sutton, vice chairwoman of the Cumberland County Board of Education, held a similar view:
“I believe the whole thing was blown out of proportion, and I want strong African-American teachers who are innovative and creative.
Was this the best judgment? No, it wasn’t. We don’t always make the best judgments.”
Superintendent Till, on the other hand, says there’s a clear-cut reason at the heart of the decision to suspend Francis:
“The core issue for me that we presented is that we have a curriculum and that stepping on the flag was not a part of the curriculum.”
Nonetheless, Francis — fearing that his teaching license will be revoked by the board — has said he’ll seek other legal means to continue his fight.