Colleyville Heritage High School has put it’s first black principal, Dr. James Whitfield, on paid administrative leave. The move comes a few weeks after the July board of trustees meeting where a man accused Dr. James of teaching Critical Race Theory.
The man called Whitfield by name, which violates the meeting rules demanding that he be fired. The other parents in the meeting took it up in the chorus, demanding that James should go. Five days after the meeting, Whitfield defended himself in a Facebook post saying that the allegations were false.
He wrote, “I can no longer maintain my silence in the face of this hate, intolerance, racism and bigotry. I am not the Critical Race Theory boogeyman. I am the first African American to assume the role of Principal at my current school in its 25 year history and I am keenly aware of how much fear this strikes in the hearts of a small minority who would much rather things go back to the way they used to be”.
Despite the effort to prove himself innocent, Dr. James’ troubles did not end. A few days later, another white parent was on it again. The parent wrote to the school district complaining of a photo James had posted on his Facebook account.
In the photo, James was holding his white wife celebrating their wedding anniversary. The parent wrote in an email to the school district, “Is this the Dr Whitfield we want as an example for our students?” The school district asked Dr. James to pull down the photo, which he adhered to and hid in privacy settings.
The School District has issued statements saying James’ suspension had nothing to do with the accusations from the parents. Confirming the news of his suspension, Superintendent Robin Ryan said that the district had put the Principal on leave due to a “personal matter.” James, however, remains baffled and confused regarding his suspension, which he terms as unfair.
He wrote on his Facebook account, “I was not given any clear reasoning behind the decision and was not given a timetable regarding further steps. I was simply told that it was in the best interest of the district.”
Thousands of Dr. James Whitfield students have since turned up to defend him amidst the termination demands from parents. One of the students noted, “Once they step out of line to attack our principal, people sit here and stay silent and do nothing. They’re his bosses and they sit silent as he gets harassed”.