MARION, Ark. — Some parents want the superintendent of a Mid-South school district to step down after comments he’s accused of making about shooting students.
“As a parent of a child that was involved in this situation, I don’t feel like you should be over children and over a school district when you set that type of climate,” parent Stephanie Lane told FOX13.
Parents in Marion, Ark. told FOX13 their sons overheard Superintendent Glen Fenter say “Why don’t you take them out and shoot them and I bet you they will socially distance then.”
FOX13 spoke with three different parents Wednesday who had the same story. They said the resource officer told their children to social distance because they were sitting too close at a volleyball match last week. Those parents said the superintendent called them and apologized explaining his side of the story.
A Facebook video from Stephanie Lane described the conversation her son said he overheard the superintendent of Marion Schools tell a resource officer at a volleyball game last Thursday.
Lane told FOX13 her 14-year-old had no idea at the time it was Superintendent Glen Fenter making the comments until she got an apology from him over the phone.
“He said at that moment, ‘I said, I said to the security officer, why don’t you take them outside and shoot them and shoot them in the pinky toe. I bet you they’ll social distance then.’”
Lane said Fenter reached out to her after she complained to the principal of Marion Junior High School about the alleged incident. Two other parents had the same story claiming Fenter told them it was just a joke, and he was referencing the pinky toe scene from the movie “Harlem Knights” with Richard Pryor.
“I wonder, would anybody else see this as a joke or take it as a joke if the highest office of the school district would say something like that to children?” Lane asked.
FOX13 spoke with the superintendent over the phone. He said he cannot comment until there is some type of reconciliation. He said this is all a misunderstanding and said he would never tell anyone to take anybody out and shoot them.
FOX13 also asked Fenter what his conversation with the resource officers was.
“I cannot comment on that because I want to make sure I do remember exactly what went on,” he said.
“With the racial climate and everything that is going on in our nation, what would make you think it was OK and to reference taking a group of children outside and shooting them?” Lane asked.
A spokeswoman with the Arkansas Department of Education said any complaint filed with the state is confidential.
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