School Removes Teacher Seen Berating Student Over the Pledge of Allegiance in Viral TikTok

Reiber arguing with a student over the pledge via TikTok user @scobbydooo1

Social media users have been sharing a cellphone video of a Florida high school teacher chastising a kid for refusing to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance.

In the video, art teacher Robert Reiber can be seen standing over the unidentified student sitting at his desk. Reiber can be heard scolding the student over his refusal to stand for the pledge of allegiance. Later in the video, he implies that the same student should go back to “Mexico or Guatemala” to which the student responds “I was born here.”

The original video on TikTok has been viewed over 1.6 million times and shared by over 3000 users.

The teacher has since been removed from the classroom. Mike Barber, the Manatee County School District Spokesman released a statement saying:

“The teacher shown in the video confronting a student in a Manatee district classroom was removed from the school the day the incident occurred. The teacher no longer has contact with any students. In addition, the school district’s Office of Professional Standards is thoroughly investigating the incident in accordance with district and state due process policies and procedures. The School District of Manatee County strongly condemns any language or behavior that degrades, humiliates or insults any individuals – most especially the young people, families and community we have the privilege of serving.”

It has long been held that students are not required to stand for the pledge of allegiance.

The Supreme Court ruled in the 1943 decision West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette that students who objected to the flag salute and required reciting of the Pledge for religious grounds could not be coerced into doing so. In 1978 the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declared a New Jersey law mandating students to stand during the Pledge to be unconstitutional in Lipp v. Morris.

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