A Nebraska schoolteacher was placed on administrative leave after she shared a social media post comparing anti-maskers to the Ku Klux Klan.
The Elkhorn Public School District announced on Tuesday that an unnamed elementary teacher was placed on leave for an unspecified amount of time after posting an illustration comparing people who are against masks with members of the KKK. The image said, "Isn't it strange they can breathe in this" next to a klansman hood and then a face mask with the words "but not this," WOWT reported.
Multiple parents from Omaha's neighborhood of Elkhorn were outraged over the social media post involving the hate group and allegedly contacted school administrators.
"It's very alarming to know that we have personal views leaking into the district," parent Ann Mouw said. "I believe in any teacher having their own personal beliefs, but when that belief is so strong and comparing our constitutional rights to a hate group, that is not going to be tolerated, it should not be tolerated in any school."
"I'm literally sick to my stomach," Mouw added. "I trusted her unbiased unpolitical opinion. And I loved her — nothing ever made me think that she would have that type of discriminatory behavior."
The school district launched a probe after being made aware of the complaints and released a statement.
"Elkhorn Public Schools was made aware of the referenced social media post this morning," the statement said. "The teacher has been placed on administrative leave as we investigate this matter. Notably, the stated views were expressed on the individual's personal social media account and do not represent those of the Elkhorn Public Schools."
The anonymous teacher attempted to explain the comparison, "What I'm saying is that Ku Klux Klan members, if they're anti-maskers, they're hypocrites."
"My personal views on politics, masking, those are outside of the classroom," the teacher told WOWT. "I love my job. My opinions are not part of my job. I do my job, I teach math, I teach literature, I teach critical thinking skills. We don't talk about politics."
Elkhorn Public Schools says masks are optional for students and staff, but "strongly recommended."
In the past week, two other teachers found themselves in hot water over comments and behavior involving the COVID-19 pandemic.
A middle school teacher in Washington is under investigation for a Facebook post where she wrote that she is "ready to say let them die," referring to unvaccinated people.