ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A Fairfax County mother believes her son was wrongly punished by a teacher and was targeted because of his race.
Serena Johnson’s son attended West Potomac High School in Alexandria, but he was expelled after a dispute with his teacher. Johnson said it started with her son arriving late to class. From there, there are reportedly several different versions about what happened.
“The teacher accused him of actually getting physical with her,” Johnson said. “Actually, the teacher had gotten physical with my son, and my son was removed from West Potomac High School and put into an alternative school.”
FOX 5 has learned that the teacher has been placed on administrative leave with pay.
According to Johnson, this particular teacher has had several disputes with several minority students and often led to harsh disciplinary measures for the students. She also insists white students who committed harsher missteps often received a slap on the wrist.
Her concerns echo the concerns made public by the Fairfax County NAACP last week that African American and minority students in Fairfax County are disproportionately targeted. The organization is demanding reform for Fairfax County police's School Resource Officers program.
“It just seems like the kids that are getting suspended from school or removed from Fairfax County Public Schools or West Potomac are minority children,” said Johnson.
Fairfax County Public Schools said in a statement:
"The administrators at West Potomac High School are committed to equity among all students in the enforcement of the FCPS Student Rights and Responsibilities regulation. By law, we cannot comment on specific student disciplinary cases or personnel actions involving FCPS employees."
Fairfax County police are currently reviewing data concerning the Fairfax County NAACP's assertion that minority students are receiving harsher disciplinary actions than their counterparts. FOX 5 is told police plan to respond in the coming days.
Fairfax County Public Schools said if parents are concerned about disciplinary action taken against their child, they can appeal it.