TRACY, Calif. (KTXL) — Parents and students in San Joaquin County are putting the pressure on a top educator to resign.
The demand comes after parents say a superintendent of the New Jerusalem Elementary School District and his wife made insensitive and violent comments on social media.
“They’re all talking about shooting people and then I’d seen her husband’s post talking about, ‘This is what we’ve been prepping for.’ And I’m like, ‘This is superintendents,’” parent Gina Pettis said.
The message was posted on Traci Thoming’s Facebook page. It reads, “So rioters you say country boys are next. You do realize country boys will sit 30 feet up a tree all day just to kill something.”
Traci Thoming is known to work closely with athletes and students at Delta Charter Schools.
“I’m just gonna call it exactly what it is, it’s blatantly … it’s racism,” parent and Pastor Pamela Houston said. “Just totally offended and just disgusted by the whole thing.”
Under her post, an account under David Thoming, the district superintendent and Traci’s husband, replies, “It’s what we’ve been prepping for,” along with a crude drawing of a man firing off a machine gun.
“It’s not a joke, it’s not a game. This is serious. This is not the time, nor the season, to joking or playing about any form of violence,” Houston said.
Pettis said she shared her concern in the post with Traci and was told, “Our school district is a school of choice and your children do not have to go there.”
“It’s very sad because now you feel like when your kids are going to school are they mistreating them?” Pettis said.
FOX40 reached out to the Thomings. David Thoming said they’ve been threatened over the last 24 hours because of the post saying, in a statement:
As a school district superintendent for fourteen years I have never been on the receiving end of such a vicious and baseless attack as I have over the past 24 hours. Groups who disagree with me politically have taken a personal post about protecting my family from rioters completely out of context and made it into something it is not.
Because of this unwarranted attack on my First Amendment Rights I have received numerous threats, including death threats to my family. The very thing the post was meant to address, someone attacking my family, is now being threatened by those who misconstrued the original message. I am working with multiple law enforcement agencies regarding those threats and the doxing of my family.
I will not resign my position and look forward to many years of continued service to NJESD and all the students we serve.Superintendent David Thoming, New Jerusalem Elementary School District
Parents and students feel administrators who share this view are in no position to teach children. At least 700 people who share the same sentiment have signed a petition that has since been removed. Parents said if the petition remains down, they will create a new one.
“It just makes you wonder, what is taking place behind the scenes? What are those conversations that are being held behind the scenes?” Houston said.
Some community members are urging families to attend Tuesday’s board of trustees meeting in an effort to get the superintendent to resign. It will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the New Jerusalem Elementary School campus.