Teacher’s remarks rile parents

A parent of a fourth-grader at Delcambre Elementary School said she and other parents are demanding the termination of a teacher who allegedly, in remarks to her students the day after the presidential election, made derogatory comments about President Obama’s re-election.

Lindsay Shello said she lodged a complaint against the teacher after her son came home from school on Nov. 7 and told her the teacher said “the United States would be the new China since Obama won as president.”

Shello said her son also said the teacher, who was wearing an all-black wardrobe that day, told the students “She was going to a funeral because it was the death of the United States since Obama won the election.”

Shello said she met with the teacher, school Principal Danelle Renard and Iberia Parish school system Assistant Superintendent Michael Judice about the matter.

Renard, contacted by The Advocate on Tuesday, referred all media questions to Judice.

The teacher, whose name is being withheld by school officials because this is a personnel matter, is still teaching at the school, Judice said.

“The incident was investigated and it’s a personnel issue, so it’s a confidential issue,” Judice said. “The situation was dealt with.”

Judice said he could not elaborate on what type of action, if any, was taken against the teacher.

“It’s a situation that was handled,” he repeated. “It’s a very, very good school. It’s one of our best schools in the parish. The parents and students we have there are good and supportive of the school.”

Shello said she and other parents have organized a protest at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at the School Board Office in New Iberia to demand the teacher’s termination.

“Politics is politics … that’s your opinion, that’s your decision,” Shello said. “A classroom full of 9-year-old children? They don’t understand what’s going on — to tell them it’s the death of the United States.”

Judice said neither the district office nor Renard had been contacted about the planned protest.

Shello said she had no plans to request that her child be removed from the teacher’s classroom.

“He has his friends in the classroom,” she said. “It’s not like he did anything wrong.”