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Teacher Removed From School For History Lesson About Civil War That Included Confederate Flag

A middle-school history teacher in Rancho Cordova, California, was forced to resign after showing a Confederate Flag and a Union Flag during a class discussion about the Civil War.

Sutter Middle School American History teacher Woody Hart was initially suspended with pay the week prior after district officials found the Confederate Flag one evening after class.

It was in preparation for a lesson about the Civil War.

“(Thursday) in closed session, the Board of Education accepted this Sutter Middle School teacher’s retirement … and he will not be returning to school this year,” Superintendent Deborah Bettencourt said in a statement Thursday.

“We just came in and we saw the Union flag on one side of the room and the Confederate flag on the other side of the room,” Hart’s student Ana Kneisley told KCRA.

Kneisley pointed out the Confederate flag is in her textbook and said the hanging flags were part of a lesson, where students were members of the two armies.

“I actually very much appreciated the way he taught history,” Kneisley said. “I felt that we were getting more involved than what our other classes did.”

This started back in November, when a black family filed a complaint against Hart for making a comment that Southerners responded to calls for “black equality” by saying “we treat all black people equally. We hang them all.”

During the investigation, the teacher told administrators that statement was made in the context of if people went to the South to promote equal rights for African-Americans, the Southerners would respond, “We treat them all equally. We hang them.”

In a statement to its Facebook page, the Folsom Cordova Unified School District said they removed the flag because “regardless of context, to many of our students, families and staff, the Confederate flag is a racist symbol of hate.”

At a meeting the day after Hart’s forced resignation, a raucous crowd took both sides, some cheering the decision while others were upset that their beloved teacher was forced out.

“He’s personally my favorite teacher in the whole school,” student Ana Kneisely told CBS Sacramento.