I can't believe I have to start a petition for this. I want to state that right off the bat. This is all so absurd and shouldn't be going on. Anyways, here goes:
An employee at one of our schools expressed views that make her unworthy of holding the position she does in our community. An educator, in this case a Principal no less, posted on social media the following: "fuck the police." (amongst other things) This is a hateful, bigoted sentiment and because of that Damicka Bates, the soon-to-be Principal at one our elementary schools, should be immediately fired.
To the School Board: What kind of judgment does it show for and educator to take her kids downtown during this chaotic time to pose for pictures with vulgar and hateful graffiti, and then lack the good sense to keep it off social media? It's just utterly stupid, unacceptable, and shows a blatant disregard for the code of conduct in place and higher standard we expect from a person in her position. Ms. Bates clearly has not lived up to that standard. We teach our own students to have better judgment than this and that misuse of social media can have consequences. Surely a principal is aware of this as well.
The district would not stand for the denigration of any other people, profession, etc, so why this would be allowed is beyond me.
Here is our question - how might this Principal treat kids who have family in law enforcement? She has clearly outed herself as an "activist" teacher with anti-police sentiments. What is she teaching our students? It's more than reasonable to have these concerns after all this. And as someone with family that worked in law enforcement, im not okay with this. I've seen first hand what the "fuck the police" sentiment leads to, as a family member of mine was shot and almost killed in the line of duty. Four officers in total were shot that night, one ultimately losing her life to complications from her injuries. Her name was Jane Thompson. Look it up to learn more about this incident and why this sentiment she's expressed is hurtful, offensive and disqualifies her from holding the position she does. This is not just some "chic" or harmless phrase she's using. The consequences associated with this mindset are very real. My family and many others have lived it. Every five years my family and a host of others have to organize and petition the parole board to keep the man that did this behind bars. Thankfully we've been successful thus far.
Additionally, this is what we are getting in exchange for our tax dollars. And that is sad. Is it really too much to ask that Pickerington hires educators that at the least, refrain from this type of trashy, hateful behavior publicly? We are asked to support levies, pay our taxes, etc. I can tell you this: I will not support any levy so long as this is the standard the district holds people to. Nor will many others.
I've heard her excuses. Ive seen the insincere apology. None of it will suffice. You cannot unring this bell. The damage is done.
In more sensible times, this would've been handled swiftly and not been an issue. Yet here we are with "Principal Fuck The Police" teaching our kids still. She's embarrassed PLSD. And she's embarrassed this city.
And it is in no way acceptable.
Therefore, we the undersigned request that Ms. Bates be removed and replaced from her position in our district. Her continued presence knowing what we now know about the views she is all too proud to share publicly is simply unconscionable and a slap in the face. Her presence will be a distraction and her judgment has shown to be extremely poor. Failing to do the right thing here sets a very bad precedent and opens a can of worms that I assure you, board members nor anyone else in the community wants to deal with. We are also aware of Ms. Bates having people rally to support her as well. I would simply like to point out that caving to the mob of her supporters who are misrepresenting the facts, omitting necessary details, petitioning to others all over the country rather than keeping it local, and not being forthright with them about her blatant violation and clear admission of such, will reflect poorly on PLSD, and this district will suffer because of it. It's even more despicable that those petitioning in support of her have baselessly accused others of wanting the district to remove her solely due to racial animus, for which there is zero evidence whatsoever. How pathetic and cynical of them.
Simply put - we demand better than this. And we should. There is a code of conduct in place for a reason. This should be an easy decision. The ball is in your court. Ms Bates may be a wonderful person. She may very well be a good educator. But even good people must have consequences for egregious lapses in judgment such as this.