Today, an Algonquin Regional High School phys ed teacher was placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation into a “concerning video”.
The announcement by Principal Sean Bevan only refers to an unnamed employee. But the message also related that it was based on a video that had been “circulating among the student population”.
I learned that today students were sharing a video that depicts an exchange between a black YouTuber and an unnamed man that some students believed to be an ARHS Health & Fitness teacher.
The section of the video being circulated shows a white man smiling making remarks based on the idea that “a lot of black people commit murder”. (Scroll down for more on the exchange.)
Students then witnessed the teacher being called to the office during the school day, and not returning to teach his classes.
Although it is clear the teacher was placed on leave because of the video, I can’t confirm that students were correct about him being the man in the video.
The message from the school states that the school was just alerted about the video today. Several students emailed Bevan and others used the school’s anonymous reporting platform Say Something. Bevan wrote:
We thank the students and other members of our community who reported this concerning information.
Please understand that the District takes such complaints seriously and is promptly investigating the matter. In the interim, pending the outcome of the investigation, the District has placed the employee on paid administrative leave.
For more context, the video was posted by a black YouTuber, samfromNJ. It is one of many that highlights interactions he has had on the website Omegle, which he has described as “America’s Most Racist Website”. The website randomly pairs visitors “to talk one-on-one”.
The video in question was posted on March 30th. You can see the relevant section of the video (5 minutes in) here and text from the verbal exchange below:
Unnamed Man: what’s up player? Kill anybody this week?
SamfromNJ: [Laughter] Yo!, what you mean by that?
Man: You killed any–you committed any murder this week, man?
Sam: And bro, like do I look like a murderer to you?
Man: Yeah. You’re black.
Sam: Oh no, you got to be f*cking with me. You got it. Ain’t no way!
Man: Don’t blame me, blame your people man, it’s–it happens all the time. . .
You can’t deny a lot of black people commit murder