The principal of a high school in Colleyville says his boss ordered him to remove the photo of his wife hugging from social media.
James Whitfield, principal of Collieville Heritage High School, faces sharp criticism from some parents who accuse him of teaching critical racial theory.
One of those parents complained about the photo and the district ordered Whitfield to drop it. He said the district wouldn’t tell him why.
It was supposed to be a celebration of Whitfield and his family, who were appointed principal of Collieville Heritage Middle School two years ago. But before he opened the champagne, his boss called and asked to check his email.
He looked online and immediately saw a photo of him and his wife on the beach-a photo taken by a professional photographer on their anniversary.
“I look at the picture, and when I look at the words above it, it says,” Is this Dr. Whitfield we want the school to lead? ” I showed it to my wife who started to tear immediately. “
Whitfield’s wife, Kelly, said she took a picture to mean that a black man with a tattoo on his arm was inappropriate. But James Whitfield said he took it that the problem meant he was in an interracial relationship.
Whitfield, who was appointed principal of Collieville Heritage High School before the 2020-21 school year, was accused online and on the board of directors for promoting the belief that whites are essentially racists.
That’s what he and the district denied. Whitfield couldn’t shake the 2019 photo case from his head, stressing the district’s conclusion that the photo was inappropriate.
“They said,’Can you take it down? Can you take this photo down? Can you hide it?'” And I said, “Why? Photograph What’s wrong with that? ” It was, “Hey, I’m trying to avoid any conflict.”
Grapevine Collieville ISD issued the following statement on Monday:
“When social media concerns get the district’s attention, we are responsible for considering it. Some of the photos the district received contain suspicious poses for educators, especially principals and managers. As the principal of the new campus, Dr. Whitfield wanted to make the transition to Heritage Junior High School a smooth transition, so he raised his concerns and requested that the photos be removed from Facebook. “
Some parents at Collieville Heritage learned of the photo incident after a long social media post about Whitfield’s weekend accusations and the pressure he and his family were under. Photo.
“I think it’s sweet. He has a happy marriage. He and his beautiful wife, they have a beautiful family,” said Sunni Roppolo, who has children at Collieville Heritage High. .. school.
Roppolo said there was no reason to censor the principal, regardless of whether the district acted on racial issues or concerns from parents about the way the couple was raised.
“Unfortunately, educators are bound by another standard, so I choke it. I think it’s ridiculous. I don’t understand why couples can’t take pictures of them in sweet moments. Hmm.”
Hundreds of signatures were signed in support of Whitfield, who said he was humble in the support he received and regrets having held it for a long time.
I wish I could be confident that “No, this is a photo of me and my wife kissing on the beach. I have no reason to delete this photo.”