A South Carolina school district recently responded to a lawsuit filed by a ninth-grade student who claimed that a teacher had pushed her against a wall for not reciting the Pledge of Allegiance while walking to class at River Bluff High School.
The district denied the allegations and stated that the incident actually occurred during a moment of silence, not the pledge, as the student had claimed.
According to the district’s lawyer, video footage from the hallway revealed that the teacher had touched the student’s shoulder to get her attention but did not push her.
Furthermore, the confrontation occurred after the Pledge of Allegiance had ended and the moment of silence had begun.
State law allows students to opt-out of reciting the pledge if they are not disruptive.
The district confirmed that Barnwell, the student, was not silent during the moment of silence and had argued with the teacher until she walked away.
The school district’s attorney explained that students can be required to stop whatever they are doing, including walking down the hall, and remain silent during the moment of silence.
Despite the district’s findings, the student felt humiliated and disrespected, stating that nobody had apologized or acknowledged her hurt.
The district claims that the incident was fully investigated, and neither the student nor the teacher should face any disciplinary action.
The student’s family is suing the teacher, principal, school district, and state education officials, claiming that they violated the student’s civil and First Amendment rights.
However, the police conducted their investigation and did not file any charges.
In conclusion, the school district denies the allegations made by the student and her family and states that the incident occurred during a moment of silence, not the Pledge of Allegiance.
The district has reviewed all footage from the hallway and concluded that neither the student nor the teacher should face discipline.
The family’s lawsuit is ongoing, and the district has condemned any hateful communication directed towards both its employees and the student involved in the incident.