White middle school teacher fired for telling Black students his race was superior

A white middle school teacher no longer works at his Texas school after telling students that he believes his race to be “superior”.

“Deep down in my heart, I’m ethnocentric, which means I think my race is the superior one,” the teacher was filmed saying in the presence of students from multiple racial backgrounds in a classroom at Bohls Middle School, which has classes between sixth and eight grade and is located in Pflugerville – around 18 miles northeast of the state capital of Austin.

“I think everybody thinks that,” the teacher adds in the footage which has been viewed millions of times on social media. “They’re just not honest about it.”

The statement appeared to be said towards two Black students.

“I’m not racist though. I like all types of kinds,” one student responds in the video.

“Did I say I don’t like people?” the teacher says.

“Wait, so you said you are what? You are a racist?” another Black student inquires.

“I think everybody is a racist at that level,” the teacher says.

“No. But you said you are a racist,” the student responds.

“I did. I did,” the teacher says, to which a couple of Black students say they no longer respect him.

The superintendent of the Pflugerville Independent School District, Douglas Killian, said in a statement on Monday that the argument was “inappropriate, inaccurate, and unacceptable,” adding that “this type of interaction will not be tolerated”.

“As of Monday morning, November 14, the teacher in question is no longer employed by Pflugerville ISD and we are actively looking for a replacement,” he said, according to NBC News.

The superintendent didn’t name the teacher. While the teacher appears to be white, district spokesperson Tamra Spence said she was unable to confirm his race.

Dr Killian said officials received the news on Friday that “an inappropriate conversation” had taken place between a teacher and students at Bohls Middle School “during an advisory class”.

He said that footage of the discussion had been sent to officials, and had been posted on social media, by students in the class. He apologized to any parents whose children were shown in the video without them being aware.

He also made an apology to students and their families “for the undue stress or concern this has caused,” adding that counsellors and administrators are available.

“We want to reiterate that this conversation does not align with our core beliefs and is not a reflection of our district or our culture at Bohls Middle School,” Dr Killian said.

He added that the district at the staff at the school “work together to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all of our students”.

“We always do our best to ensure the safety of all students; we encourage them to be self-advocates and let an adult know when something is wrong, as they did in this situation,” he said. “If you see something, say something.”

Brian Hennington has an 11-year-old son attending sixth grade at the school. He visited the school with his wife Monique last week to share their concerns after she saw the video on Facebook.

“The reason why we were appalled is because it was offensive and we definitely wanted to make sure that our voice was heard,” he told NBC News on Monday. “I think more parents need to stand up, especially the parents who had kids in the classroom.”

He added that the teacher “should be removed. He should be terminated. He should not be teaching”.

“You’re not hired to bring your opinions into the classroom, especially when you have impressionable minds,” he said. “Those kinds of exploratory conversations, that’s for the parents to expose their kids to.”