Having students write their obits before active shooter drill got teacher terminated

Having students write their obits before active shooter drill got teacher terminated

(As originally published with bells and whistles, Mon, April 10th 2023, 3:58 PM EDT)

ORLANDO, Fla. (TND) — A teacher in Florida was handed his walking papers after he tried to connect an active shooter drill set to take place on his high school’s campus to his students’ obituaries.

The situation started last Monday, April 3, when Jeffrey Keene was told about the drill.

Keene, 63, told NBC News he felt the obituaries would help his 11th and 12th-grade psychology students reflect on their lives.

The school district felt differently. Keene said students were telling him the next hour that officials at Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando were questioning them about the assignment.

“If you can’t talk real to them, then what’s happening in this environment?” Keene told NBC. “In my mind, I’ve done nothing wrong.”

He was fired before school let out, that same day.

SEE ALSO: In loving memory: ‘Redneck, SOB’ father remembered as daughter roasts him in obituary

”It wasn’t to scare them or make them feel like they were going to die,” he told NBC, “but just to help them understand what’s important in their lives and how they want to move forward with their lives and how they want to pursue things in their journey.”

He framed it to WOFL,

”If they died 24 hours from now, what would they do differently than they did yesterday?”

A spokesperson for the Orange County district said in a statement,

”Dr. Phillips High School families were informed that a teacher gave an inappropriate assignment about school violence. Administration immediately investigated and the probationary employee has been terminated.”

Keene had just been hired in January. He chose not to become a member of the teachers’ union. But, he is still listed on the school’s website as teaching social studies.

The Orange County School Board has a meeting set for Tuesday, April 11, but the agenda item to “approve human resources issues” — which would make his firing official — does not contain anything specific about Keene, or anyone else for that matter. Instead, the listing says, “Ongoing revisions and additions will occur. The final version will not be available until the date of the meeting.”

A search of Keene’s state educator’s license from the Florida Department of Education shows he has a 3-year temporary license, from 2022 to 2025, which indicates he’s a new teacher. His subject area is health, and he has not had any disciplinary action taken against him by the state.

Something to add? Disagree? Let us all know!

Verified by MonsterInsights