Meet Tamika Gatewood.
Gatewood is a kindergarten teacher from Rainshaven Elementary in Memphis, Tennessee.
Gatewood was suspended after she repeatedly insulted her students via Facebook.
Parents were shocked to see posts from Gatewood, accusing her students of having nappy hair and dirty clothes.
She wrote about breaking up a fight involving two children who had accused another of uncleanliness: ‘How bout I blasted both of them.
‘The girl in my class hair is nappy almost every day and the boy wears dirty clothes, face nasty and can’t even read. They didn’t bother nobody else when I got through with them.’
Another aggressive post is apparently a threat against students’ parents, saying: ‘If another parent tell me it’s my job to teach their children, it’s gonna be po po [i.e. police] time.’
The message concludes: ‘All I gotta say is Father God, forgive them for they should not have conceived.’
Gatewood also hinted at violent tendencies in a message discussing the saying ‘turn the other cheek’.
‘What do you think you’re supposed to do?’, she wrote. ‘Bang! Bang! Shoot ’em up dammit! Just kidding!! For real tho – slap their ass back then bang! Bang! Shoot ’em up dammit.’
Memphis school officials do not routinely monitor teachers’ online activities, and were alerted to Gatewood’s posts only after WMC-TV unearthed them.
School board commissioner Kenneth Whalum slammed authorities for their slow response to the scandal, saying, ‘It’s a much bigger issue than Facebook. It’s a much bigger issue than a teacher saying a kid has nappy hair.’
Administrators released a statement saying: ‘We take this very seriously. When made aware of inappropriate online posts, once the person is identified as an MCS employee, swift appropriate action is taken according to board policy and law.’
Local parents were unanimous in saying that Gatewood ought to lose her job over the controversial Facebook posts.
This is not the first time Gatewood has faced disciplinary action over her behavior in school. 10 years ago, the principal of the school where she was employed as a clerical worker sent a letter pleading, ‘How many times does a person have to be insubordinate before action is taken?’
Gatewood has refused to comment on her suspension, and has since deleted her Facebook page.
How could a teacher think like this of her children?