A teacher at Drexel Hill Middle School has been placed on administrative leave after she was recorded calling a parent a slur insulting to African Americans, according to school officials.
Late Thursday, Rasheed Noel posted a video to his Facebook page of a heated exchange with Renee Greeley after a fender bender in the school’s parking lot that morning.
Greeley, a teacher in the district since 2008, did not return a request for comment Friday.
Upper Darby school superintendent Daniel P. McGarry said that the district was conducting formal hearings and was taking the incident “extremely seriously.”
“This is deeply troubling and disturbing, and this clearly isn’t who we are as a district,” McGarry said Friday. “We’ll follow all of our procedures and use this as an opportunity to galvanize around each other to say we’re better than this, and that no one should be spoken to that way.”
In the video, Greeley tells Noel that she assumed the collision was deliberate because he is “probably on welfare,” and tells him to go back “to [his] Section 8 house.”
Noel, 32, responds by saying she made those comments because he’s “young and black,” to which she sarcastically agrees.
As the conversation continues, Greeley hurls the slur at Noel. He told The Inquirer on Friday morning that her use of the word stunned him.
“She wanted the opportunity to express herself. She had the floor, which is why I kept quiet and why I decided to stay on video,” Noel said. “She wanted the attention, and now she has it.”
Noel praised the response from the school district, saying it handled the incident “swiftly and professionally.” He said that at the time he had no idea that the woman taught at the school.
“I’m very happy my kids attend this school district,” he said. “Since the beginning of them enrolling here, I have had nothing but good things to say about the staff. This one teacher doesn’t speak for any of the staff members that I come across.”