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8:25 AM / Wednesday February 1, 2023

22 Feb 2019

An 11-year-old Florida student arrested for not standing during the Pledge Of Allegiance

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February 22, 2019 Category: Week In Review Posted by:

The sixth grader was sent to a juvenile detention center.

By NewsOne Staff

A substitute teacher had an 11-year-old Black student arrested because he refused to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance. The Lawton Chiles Middle Academy student is now facing misdemeanor charges.

According to Bay News 9, on Feb. 4, the student refused to stand during the Pledge of Allegiance,  and reportedly told the substitute teacher the flag was racist and the national anthem was offensive to Black people. The substitute teacher complained and the sixth grader was sent to a “juvenile detention center, charged with disrupting a school function and resisting arrest without violence.”

 “I’m upset, I’m angry. I’m hurt. More so for my son,” The child’s mother, Dhakira Talbot, said. “My son has never been through anything like this. I feel like this should’ve been handled differently. If any disciplinary action should’ve been taken, it should’ve been with the school. He shouldn’t have been arrested.”

The student is reportedly in gifted classes and has been bullied in the past.

The substitute teacher allegedly asked, “Why if it was so bad here, [why] he did not go to another place to live?”

He allegedly replied with, “They brought me here.”

“Well, you can always go back, because I came here from Cuba, and the day I feel I’m not welcome here anymore, I would find another place to live,” the teacher allegedly responded.

The arrest affidavit alleges the student “refused to follow multiple commands, repeatedly called school leaders racist and was disruptive. They said he threatened to get the school resource officer and principal fired and to beat the teacher.”

“I want the charges dropped, and I want the school to be held accountable for what happened, because it shouldn’t have been handled the way it was handled,” Talbot said.

 “A spokeswoman with the school district said students aren’t required to participate in the Pledge of Allegiance, but the substitute teacher wasn’t aware of this,” Bay News 9 reported “The spokeswoman said the substitute teacher will no longer be able to work at any of the district’s schools, and [that] the district is still looking into the matter.”

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