NJ teacher booted after profane rant at students that included calling George Floyd a ‘f***ing criminal’

Howard Zlotkin caught on video swearing at students during Zoom session

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
Friday 30 April 2021 20:54 BST
NJ teacher booted after rant at students that included calling George Floyd a ‘f***ing criminal’
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A New Jersey teacher was suspended after going on a profane Zoom rant at students in which he branded George Floyd a “f***ing criminal.”

Howard Zlotkin faces disciplinary action after a discussion on climate change with students at Dickinson High School turned ugly, NBC New York reports.

“If you think I’m privileged then f**k you, because my daughter thinks I’m privileged and I don’t speak to her,” he told students during the recorded class.

The landscape and design teacher then turned his focus to Mr Floyd, a Black man who was killed by former police officer Derek Chauvin, and whose death last year sparked racial justice protests across the US.

“I hear people whining and crying about Black Lives Matter, but George Floyd was a f***ing criminal and he got arrested and he got killed because he wouldn’t comply and the bottom line is we make him a f***ing hero,” Mr Zlotkin said.

Timmia Williams, 17, told NBC that the teacher then asked four girls in the class, who are all Black, to write an essay for him.

Her parents complained to education officials but Mr Zlotkin was back teaching the class several days later, and criticized the students for not doing the homework.

“I don’t think you can make a case. You know what Timmia? You’re full of s**t too,” Mr Zlotkin is heard saying on the second recording.

The teenager’s mother, Margie Nieves, said the incident upset her daughter.

“She was crying. She came to me, tells me, ‘Mom why is it there’s a problem with my skin?’” she told NBC New York.

Jersey City Public Schools explained that Mr Zlotkin had now been removed from teaching.

“The school was in the process of taking statements from students today before proceeding with disciplinary actions, and then the second video surfaced,” officials 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.”

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