Opinion: School board’s failure to fire Florida teacher who used n-word fails all students

Luther Vandross was outed as gay after his death.

I got all the way to the 12th grade and still didn’t have a clue about who I wanted to be or what I wanted to do with my life until my psychology teacher told me that I was a great writer and should become a journalist. To this day, I keep in contact with that inspiring woman who is now in her 80s.

And that’s what teachers do: they inspire impressionable kids and can sometimes change the trajectory of their lives. I’m living proof of that.

But what would have happened to me if I had a teacher like the one in Florida who has been calling black kids “niggers” and “idiots” and raining down a hail of negativity into their psyche?

Oscar voter reveals she didn’t vote for ‘Get Out’ claiming ‘they played the race card’ 

A teacher at Kernan Middle School in Jacksonville, Florida allegedly used a racial slur during a conversation with students, according to reports. David Swinyar is accused of using the n-word with his students. He also allegedly said to students, “You should not be dating all these different African-American boys because they are not worth it.”

David Swinyar was also accused of demeaning students by calling them “idiots” last October, according to the report.  

Oh hell no Mr. teacher — what IS you doing?

–Soledad O’Brien destroyed a CNN reporter on Twitter and we weren’t ready–

And after saying such hateful, hurtful words to the very kids he’s supposed to uplift and show love, all David Swinyar got was a slap on the wrist—a 10-day suspension—by the Duval County School Board.

This is a slap in our face.

Of course, Swinyar’s attorney denies all the allegations against his client. Whatever.

I was a teacher for several years and know that kids look up to their instructors. So when a so-called role model uses his power to promote hate and damage the impressionable minds of kids, it is especially destructive to our children and tears at the fabric of the very laws we fought for to give brown kids the right to a safe and appropriate public school education. 

–Parker Curry’s mom talks about visiting Michelle Obama and an unforgettable day

David Swinyar is an outright racist who doesn’t believe that the brown children he teaches have a right to a decent education and he seems to think he has free reign to miseducate them too.

And by giving him a mere 10-day suspension, the Duval County School Board clearly agrees.

Swinyar being able to remain in the classroom is a dangerous impediment to these kids’ education both intellectually and emotionally.

Swinyar is the spirit of George Wallace standing in the schoolhouse door. He is the embodiment of prejudice and hate and stands every day in front of a group of black kids he’d probably rather see sitting in the back of the bus instead of the front of his classroom.

–White man charged by police for spitting on black child at Hooters

To the Duval County School Board, I say take David Swinyar’s job, his professional certificate and his pension. This man lacks the desire, empathy and dedication to ensure these all children are treated fairly and receive a rigorous education that sets them up for success. His own words tell us that.