Keller, TX (WBAP/KLIF) – A Keller ISD teacher was sent home from school on Tuesday after refusing to remove a Black Lives Matter banner hanging in his classroom.
Dan Grunewald, an animation, audio/video production, and arts of communication teacher at Timber Creek High School talked to our media partner WFAA about why he has refused to remove the banner, saying that it’s wrong for the district and administrators to “side with racism.”
“There are rules. It was a directive to take the sign down, and by not, I’m going against that directive. But it’s wrong. It’s wrong of my school’s administration, my principal, and my district to side with racism,” Grunewald said.
Grunewald has been asked twice to remove the banner that has been displayed since last fall. He says that he has never been asked to remove an LGBTQ+ pride poster.
WFAA received the following statement from the district:
However, a spokesperson emailed the following statement, saying it “will serve as the District’s response:”
“Keller ISD does not discuss individual personnel matters. District Board Policy EMB Local states that “teachers shall not use the classroom to transmit personal beliefs regarding political or sectarian issues,” and the District has routinely asked employees to remove items posted on classroom walls that are considered expressions of personal beliefs. Keller ISD and Timber Creek High School encourage our teachers to create a classroom culture that respects diversity of our school community through a culture of understanding, and it is our expectation that they do so without visual representations of their own personal beliefs on classroom walls.”
Grunewald plans to be in class today, adding,
“I was told that Black Lives Matter is a controversial statement, which is simply not something I agree with. I figure it is a small gesture that I can make to my students of color that I see them. And they are valued and respected, not just in my classroom, but even those walking by, that I see them and value them.”’
See more in this video from our media partner WFAA:
(Copyright 2021 WBAP/KLIF 24/7 News. This report contains material from the WFAA-TV)