A substitute teacher at a middle school in California allegedly provoked a verbal altercation with a student over the “Thin Blue Line” flag he wore on his mask, CBS 13 Sacramento reported.
The student, 13-year-old Lucas Lillar, told CBS 13 Sacramento that a substitute at Lyman Gilmore Middle School sat behind him in an empty desk and provoked the dispute on Monday.
“That’s not the American flag,” the teacher said. “That’s the news Confederacy flag … it’s black, white with some blue line in it,” the teacher said.
“Yeah, thin blue line,” Lillar responded.
“Yeah, but it’s not American,” the teacher said.
“It’s American!” Lillar said.
The “Thin Blue Line” flag is similar to an American flag, but features one blue stripe which has become a symbol of support for law enforcement.
Lillar’s father and stepmother work in law enforcement, CBS 13 Sacramento reported. He said he wears the mask as a sign of support for his dad who he often worries about due to the nature of his job.
“I never had someone talk to me like that, yell at me in my face, especially a teacher,” Lillar told CBS 13 Sacramento.
“I was extremely angry and heartbroken, that this … that he had to deal with it,” Lillar’s mother Amanda McCallum told CBS 13 Sacramento. She said she was told by the school’s principal that the teacher will not be able to teach at the school going forward.
Andrew Withers, the Grass Valley School District Superintendent told CBS 13 Sacramento that the incident is under investigation.
“The California Education Code §44953 allows for the immediate dismissal of a substitute teacher,” he said. “Our district expects all educators to perform their duties with utmost respect and professionalism.
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