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Riverside County parent furious after teacher leads political chant involving preschool students

ABC 7 Los Angeles logo ABC 7 Los Angeles 3/24/2022 KABC
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An Eastvale mother is furious after discovering a video showing her daughter's preschool teacher leading a political chant in which the 4 and 5-year-old students were calling for President Joe Biden to leave office.

"I was just in shock," said Christina McFadden, who told Eyewitness News the video was posted on a school messaging app that is used to communicate with parents. The incident allegedly happened on Feb. 18 at Turning Point Christian School in the city of Norco.

"I had to watch it multiple times to realize, is this really happening?" McFadden said.

The video lasts only about eight seconds. You can hear a teacher asking the students, "Who's our President." The students then respond in unison, "Biden!" The teacher then asks the students "What do we want to do with him?" and the students respond twice, "We want him out!"

McFadden said when she picked up her daughter from school that afternoon, one of the first things she referenced was the chant.

"The first thing she said to me when I picked her up was 'We want him out,'" said McFadden. "That was the great message she learned that day. Her first history lesson."

McFadden said the video was removed from the messaging app about three hours after it was first posted. In its place, a school administrator left a message for the families to whom the video was sent:

"We use Brightwheel as a parent communication app to share about your child's day and activities. Earlier today a video was posted that has since been deleted as it did not share our school and church philosophy of honoring and respecting authority including those in government positions," the message said.

The message continued, "We are sorry for any misunderstanding this could of (sic) created. With courtesy towards the families of our campus and the children in the classroom I am asking you to please not share with others or post the video on any social media platform."

Eyewitness News reached out to Turning Point Christian School by phone and email and did not immediately receive a response. It's unclear what, if any, disciplinary action was taken against the teacher.

Dr. Tyrone Howard, a professor of education at UCLA, said he doesn't feel what was shown in the video is appropriate behavior by the teacher.

"I've always believed the role of teachers is not to indoctrinate students about what to think," said Howard. "It's to help develop critical thinking skills so students can make their own decisions."

"I know private schools operate under a different set of guidelines and procedures," Howard continued. "But I don't know even in a private domain that those leadership officials would want teachers telling their students what to think about a particular political figure."

McFadden said the school did not tell her whether the teacher was disciplined, only saying she had been "repentant" and had learned from her mistake. She only posted the video online, after blurring everyone's faces, when she didn't feel the school's response was adequate.

"It doesn't matter, at this point, which side of the fence you're on. This can happen in your child's classroom, and it is happening," said McFadden.

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