A New Jersey high school teacher was suspended after allegedly cursing at students and calling George Floyd a “f—ing criminal” in a series of vulgar rants, according to reports on Friday.
Dickinson High School teacher Howard Zlotkin’s first alleged meltdown over Zoom, which was captured by a student and obtained by NBC New York, occurred this week, during what should have been a class discussion about climate change.
“If you think I’m privileged then f—k you, because my daughter thinks I’m privileged and I don’t speak to her,” the science teacher said, according to the video.
“I hear people whining and crying about Black Lives Matter, but George Floyd was a f—ing criminal and he got arrested and he got killed because he wouldn’t comply and the bottom line is we make him a f—ing hero,” Zlotkin said in the recording.
Zlotkin, who is white, seemed to focus his tirade on black students, and reportedly assigned essays to four black girls in the class, including 17-year-old senior Timmia Williams, the report said.
Williams told the outlet that Zlotkin had another outburst when she refused to complete the essay.
“I don’t think you can make a case. You know what Timmia? You’re full of s–t too,” Zlotkin told her the next day in class, according to the recording.
Williams’ mother was shocked by the teacher’s comments.
“Who does that? Who would curse, I don’t even curse at my own daughter,” Margie Nieves told NBC New York.
On Friday, the district’s superintendent, Franklin Walker, told NJ.com that Zlotkin had been suspended with pay.
Walker said the district is investigating the rants, calling the language used in them “unacceptable.”
Zlotkin has taught at Dickinson High School in Jersey City for 20 years, according to NJ.com.
He is also an adjunct professor position at Hudson County Community College, a position which he has also been suspended from, the news site reported.