Authorities in Fort Worth, Texas, have opened investigations into a viral video that shows a White student making racially charged comments about a Black teacher and also striking her during a confrontation in class. The incident happened at Castleberry High School.
According to Newsweek, the video in question was shared on Twitter over the weekend by local news platform “Smash Da Topic.” It has since been viewed over 200,000 times. In the video, the White female student can be seen walking towards the teacher’s desk while the teacher appears to be making a phone call.
The White student appears to cut the call before striking the teacher on the arm after she tries to get the student’s hand off the phone. The student is later seen making a phone call. “I’m calling my momma, you ain’t about to f*** me up b****!” the student is heard shouting.
The student is then heard supposedly talking to her mother on the phone. “I need you to get over here now because this teacher is about to get f***** up if she doesn’t get the f*** away from me,” the student is heard saying.
“You want to talk to her ’cause she’s Black and she’s f******* pissing me off right now?” the student says before throwing the phone towards the teacher. She is then seen leaving the class.
In the wake of the incident, the Castleberry Independent School District released a statement on Monday saying it had seen the video in question. “Castleberry ISD is aware of, and greatly disturbed by, videos of an incident circulating [on] social media in which a student booms aggressive toward an African American teacher, including attacking the teacher physically and making racially charged comments and threats,” the statement said.
“We first want to commend the teacher for the calm demeanor and utter professionalism she demonstrated throughout the entirety of the incident, even when the situation turned violent and offensive. We support this teacher and her response in the strongest terms possible,” the statement added.
Besides announcing it was investigating the incident, the school district also confirmed it had “immediately” referred the matter to law enforcement “because criminal activity occurred.”
“Castleberry ISD will follow the law in allocating appropriate discipline,” the statement continued. “Harassment, racism, and violence against our teachers will not be tolerated at Castleberry ISD, and we will take swift and effective action to protect our teachers so that they can perform their duties and educate students in a safe environment.”
This is outrageous. This Black teacher should be commended for keeping her composure in the face of such offensive criminal behavior by this student exhibiting her white privilege. pic.twitter.com/4iSXbrIAnw— Ben Crump (@AttorneyCrump) November 22, 2021
Following the incident, however, the student’s mother, Brittany Evans, told WFAA her daughter is autistic, bi-polar, and struggles with depression with anxious distress. “I was upset for the teacher,” she said. “I was upset for her even being in that situation.”
Evans also said she had held various meetings with district leaders in an effort to get her daughter transferred to special education classes because of her medical condition. “I wish the school would label her correctly so we didn’t have to go through this,” Evans said.
Responding to her daughter’s racially offensive comments about the teacher, Evans said she had no idea “where she would learn something like that.” “I know I don’t throw racial slangs ever,” she added. “I know none of my family members that live in the house with me throw racial slangs ever.”
Evans also said she wanted to get in touch with the teacher after she became aware of the incident. “She is an amazing woman. She is calm, very collected, super sweet. I wanted to reach out to her but didn’t know how,” she said. “She is, in my eyes, a saint. And needs an award.”
Meanwhile, the Executive Director for the United Educators Association, Steve Poole, told WFAA the student needs to face the full brunt of the law. “What that student did is a felony under state law,” Poole said. “Assaulting a public servant – and a teacher is a public servant – is a felony. And hopefully the student will face appropriate consequences.”