A French teacher at Cypress Bay High School in Broward County has been suspended for five days for calling a Muslim student a “rag-head,” “Taliban” and a “terrorista.”
Maria Valdes had repeatedly referred to Deyab-Houssein Wardani by those epithets until the Wardani’s parents finally complained to the school.
Youssef Wardani, father of the 14-year-old student, called the decision “disgusting.’ He said he was working with the Council on American–Islamic Relations to pursue some sort of legal action against the district.
“I’ll keep sitting in their face until they recognize what they’ve done,” said Wardani, an engineer in Weston.
As part of the discipline, teacher Maria Valdes will also undergo diversity training. Valdes, who has been working in the district since 2004, can appeal the suspension. She did not return a call seeking comment.
The district charged Valdes with misconduct in office, incompetency, immorality and violating School Board policy.
Wardani and students from Florida International University and Florida Atlantic University protested outside the Broward School Board building in Fort Lauderdale earlier this month, demanding the district fire or suspend the teacher for a year.
District Superintendent Robert Runcie, who’s black, said he understood the family’s misgivings because of his own personal experiences.
“I hope you can understand, given my life experience, why I took this situation seriously. Any situation involving wrongful treatment of our students is something we absolutely don’t tolerate,” he said.
Runcie says the situation “was handled appropriately,” but Mr. Wardani was not assuaged.
“You have failed every teacher, parent and child in this district,” he said.
h/t to BizPac Review.
IMAGE: Rob Chandanais/Flickr