Texas teacher placed on leave for BLM and LGBTQ posters in virtual classroom

On Thursday, the Roma school district reversed its decision and the teacher was reinstated.

Taylor Lifka's virtual classroom (via Social Media)

Taylor Lifka, an English teacher at the Roma High School in Roma, Texas, was placed on administrative leave on Sunday after parents complained about the posters displayed on the walls of her virtual classroom.

Lifka showcased a collage of posters that included a Black Lives Matter poster, a rainbow flag, and a message written in Spanish that promoted solidarity between Black and brown people. She took a screenshot of the posters and uploaded the image to her social media profiles.

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On Sunday, a day before classes were scheduled to begin, a school official told Lifka to take the posters down. When Lifka refused, she was placed on paid leave.

“My assistant principal told me, ‘Please take the posters down.’ I guess once that happened I knew that it might be a rocky road, but considering being put on leave? I never really thought that that was going to be their first step,” Lifka told the Texas Tribune.

“This action was not intended to reflect any form of punishment or admonishment towards Ms. Lifka, but was purely driven by a need to review the circumstances and come to a sound resolution for all persons involved,” the Roma Independent School District said in a statement.

By Thursday, the Roma school district reversed its decision and it is unclear whether an online petition that was initiated by a local LGBTQ rights group, South Texas Equality Project, had anything to do with school officials’ change of heart.

READ MORE: Teacher resigns over backlash from reading ‘gay fairy tale’ to students

According to ABC News, Lifka refuses to return to her classroom until the district is willing to commit to tangible change that supports “anti-racist policies and tolerance in our classrooms.” She also asked that the district provide additional training and clarify guidance for staff regarding inclusion.


Lifka claims that “this all sort of exploded” after the image of the posters was shared by a pro-Trump Facebook group.

In an online statement Lifka wrote: “They say I haven’t been punished and that’s fine, but at the same time I’m a human being and this has been challenging.” She expressed that she needs support from the administration and needs to know that they’re on the same page.

She said she was told by a school administrator that their small town is “not ready” for some of her progressive views.

“If you’re not ready today, you’re not ready tomorrow, and if you’re not ready tomorrow, you’re not going to be ready five years from now,” said Lifka. She also asked that if now wasn’t a good time to speak up, then when would be?

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