Assistant principal responds to retweet uproar

Brandi Cummings on assistant principal tweet controversy

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – The Norfolk assistant principal at the center of a controversial tweet is telling her side of the story.

Amy Strickland re-tweeted the “OrNahhTweets” Twitter account in June, before she was employed as Booker T. Washington High School’s assistant principal. The tweet showed several high school-aged couples dressed in prom apparel. All the males were black and the girls were white. The tweet was captioned “Every white girl’s father’s worst nightmare or nah?”

A group of Booker T. students walked out of class in protest of the tweet, which they found offensive. Since WAVY’s initial report on that, the Norfolk branch of the NAACP announced it would hold the school’s administration accountable and has launched an investigation.

Document: NAACP statement

Strickland issued a news release Thursday in response to the uproar. She said she is currently on administrative leave from the school, then explained her actions. Strickland acknowledged she forwarded the tweet to her daughter in June and never interpreted the tweet as racist. Strickland is white. She said both of her daughters went to prom with African American dates.

Strickland’s news release continued:

I have devoted years of my life to educating students in a predominantly African American school and was named Teacher of the Year for the predominantly African American Portsmouth school system last year. Partly because of my exemplary record of working well and achieving success in an urban school system, I was hired this fall as Assistant Principal at Booker T. Washington.

Document: Amy Strickland news release

After Strickland’s statement, the Norfolk Branch NAACP told it is not attacking her character. They are not calling her racist, but say the point is she re-tweeted a racist tweet. They want to know why she re-tweeted it. They are continuing their investigation.

School Board President Dr. Kirk T. Houston Sr. told WAVY News the board is taking the allegations seriously and the administration is “reviewing the matter for appropriate action.”

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