Petition to fire teacher over controversial tweet


O’FALLON, Mo. ( — The Fort Zumwalt School District is investigating a controversial post tweeted by a teacher responding to another tweet about gay marriage. The public Twitter account has since been made private. However, the screenshot has been shared multiple times on social media. It reads, “Never should have allowed gay marriage to start with. Marriage is between man and woman, plain and simple.”

A short time later, the teacher posted another tweet apologizing saying, “I made a post earlier that was apparently insensitive to many and hurtful. We all make mistakes and mine was public. I apologize to anyone that was offended. In reading responses I am deeply regretful of hurting anyone’s feelings.”

News 4 spoke with parents and students concerned with the remarks. Caitlin Bush graduated in May but said she had the teacher for two semesters. She created a petition that has garnered nearly 2,000 signatures in four days. She believes the teacher should be fired.

“Part of a teacher’s job is to keep students safe, to create a safe space at school especially for students who don’t have that safe space at home,” Bush said. “If you cannot love and accept all of your students, you shouldn’t be teaching.”

Superintendent Dr. Bernard DuBray said the district is taking this matter very seriously and has met with the teacher but couldn’t comment on possible disciplinary action being taken. As of Thursday, DuBray said the teacher, who is also a coach, is still employed with the district.

“His Twitter feed – it wasn’t privatized and so it was open for any of our students, parents, community to see,” DuBray said. “If he wants to have an opinion that’s fine but he needs to keep it to himself or privatize his Twitter.”

DuBray said the teacher violated the district’s ethics policy. Bush said she wants action, not just an apology.

“Because of free speech you can technically say that but you need to accept the consequences,” Bush said.

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