News & Politics

NYC Private School Teachers Fired for Forcing Anti-Israel Views on Students

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It would appear that indoctrinating students with personal political beliefs isn’t as well tolerated in private schools as in public schools:

The New York Post reports that history teachers Shawn Redden and Joel Doerfler “will not be returning in September,” and that both dismissals are “linked to this situation.”

The “situation” referred to here is parental unease over “how they communicated anti-Israel views to students.”

The school’s headmaster and board chairman sent a letter to all the parents in response to the controversy, assuring them they had examined “both broadly and specifically about the most effective and appropriate ways to deal with controversial subjects…”

Obviously, parents at an expensive private school hold a lot more sway than does the PTA at a public school. Doerfler has described some of the parents as being “highly emotional supporters of Israel,” “who are hell-bent on stifling … academic investigation.” He described some of the parents as “particularly obnoxious.”

The parents counter by saying that the faculty in question are guilty of “intellectual bullying,” and one parent says that there has been a “pattern of anti-Israel incidents.”

Doerfler gave a speech a couple of years ago that was picked up by a pro-Palestinian website, which upset some of the parents.

Redden, an active participant in the Occupy Wall Street tantrums, has been accused of having “verbally attacked” students over the issue.

Both Redden and Doerfler didn’t respond to requests from the Post to respond to their firings, but have denied allegations made by the parents against them in the past.