GALLUP, N.M. (KRQE) – A teacher’s Facebook post has caused community outrage in a small New Mexico town. Now, the teacher is under investigation and parents want a public apology.
“It really does upset me,” said Greg Antonio.
“I don’t know why he would say something like that,” said Jim Velasquez.
People in Gallup are talking about a Facebook post by local teacher Andrew Gibbons.
“It makes the area look bad,” said Rhonda Antonio.
Gibbons is the technology teacher at Juan de Onate Elementary School. This week, he put a picture online of a sign outside the school that said classes are canceled Monday, April 20.
That date is better know as 4-20 or the unofficial holiday that celebrates marijuana.
Gibbons’ caption for the picture said, “you know Gallup is bad when the schools are canceled just for one day because so many parents are going to be high. Haha, jk.”
Parents in Gallup aren’t laughing.
“He’s putting a label on the parents,” said Velasquez. “You know we already have labels that Gallup has a drinking problem and all that and now you’re going to throw in marijuana.”
“For a teacher to be saying that it’s depicting this area as a place where people would do stuff like that and it’s not,” said Rhonda Antonio, who has three kids who attend Juan de Onate Elementary.
The district said it is investigating Gibbons, who has been with the school since 2013.
School officials said no disciplinary action has been taken yet, but any teacher caught acting unprofessional could face suspension or be fired.
Parents told KRQE News 13 all they want is for Gibbons to say he’s sorry.
“A public apology and next time re-word and do his words right and watch what he says because it is a reflection of our kids and the parents who do participate and do stuff for the school,” said Antonio.
The district said it does not have a specific social media policy.
Gibbons is also a pastor in Gallup.