New Jersey teacher Howard Zlotkin has been removed from the virtual classroom after going on a profanity-laced rant, reportedly against his Black students, about race and Black Lives Matter, while also offering some derogatory words about George Floyd, suggesting Floyd got what he deserved (death) at the hands of then Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin.
Zlotkin, a teacher at Dickinson High School, was teaching a lesson about climate change when suddenly his focused turned to race, according to NBC New York. Zlotkin attacked those he claimed perceived him to be the beneficiary of white privilege, including his own daughter, telling them “f— you.”
“If you think I’m privileged then f— you, because my daughter thinks I’m privileged and I don’t speak to her,” he said during the class he taught which was on Zoom. Zlotkin’s remarks were recorded by a student.
Dickinson High School senior Timmia Williams, 17, said Zlotkin became more irate as he yelled and cursed at students.
“I hear people whining and crying about Black Lives Matter, but George Floyd was a f—–g criminal and he got arrested and he got killed because he wouldn’t comply and the bottom line is we make him a f—–g hero,” said Zlotkin.
According to Williams and her mother, Margie Nieves, Zlotkin specifically targeted four Black female students and demanded that they each write an essay.
Williams and her mother said they contacted school officials but received no response; that is, until they contacted their local NBC news station.
“Who does that? Who would curse, I don’t even curse at my own daughter,” said Nieves.
Both mother and daughter said they were shocked to see that Zlotkin had returned to class and yet again cursed at students, yet again, including calling out Williams who had refused to complete the essay he asked her and the other Black students to write.
“I don’t think you can make a case. You know what Timmia? You’re full of s–t too,” Zlotkin said during another recording of his remarks.
Nieves said her daughter was left in tears after the virtual classroom incident. “She was crying. She came to me, tells me, ‘Mom why is it there’s a problem with my skin?’” she recalled.
When contacted by NBC New York, Dickinson High School officials said that Zlotkin was temporarily removed from the classroom and school as they look into the incident, but did not indicate if there would be any further discipline.
“The school was in the process of taking statements from students today before proceeding with disciplinary actions, and then the second video surfaced,” the school said in a statement. “The teacher will not have access to students or the school as we proceed. We are appalled by the statements, profanity, disrespect and treatment of students.”