Jacksonville teacher reassigned following fallout over Black Lives Matter flag

Jacksonville, Fla. — A Jacksonville teacher has been “administratively reassigned” after reportedly refusing to take down a “Black Lives Matter” flag that was hanging outside her classroom.

That teacher is Amy Donofrio, founder of the nationally-recognized, youth-based EVAC movement.

Donofrio took to Facebook earlier this week after school officials at Robert E. Lee High School allegedly removed a BLM flag that was hanging outside her classroom after Donofrio did not comply with earlier requests to do so.

Duval County Public Schools offered the following statement to Action News Jax:

Duval County Public Schools can confirm that Amy Donofrio has been administratively reassigned to paid, non-teaching duties effective today, March 25, 2021. The district has opened a human resources matter to review allegations of potential misconduct under school board policy and the Principles of Professional Conduct for the Education Profession in Florida. The presumption of innocence applies; however, Ms. Donofrio has been removed from school and classroom duties while the matter is reviewed.

Ben Frazier of the Northside Coalition held a rally outside Lee High School Thursday and claims Donoforio is a victim of a civil rights matter.

Amy is being victimized and vilified because she supports Black Lives Matter and because she supports the renaming of Robert E. Lee High School. Instead of being praised for her work with black youngsters, she has been removed from the classroom. This is a serious civil rights matter; Amy has been exiled because she posted a Black Lives Matter sign in her classroom.”

On Thursday evening, Donofrio, surrounded by supporters, read from a prepared statement that said, in part:

“I publicly recorded and declined to be what I believed to be a discriminatory demand. And I consider it to be discriminatory for many reasons. One of which is that DCPS not only allows, but promotes, symbols of other social movements and protections. Including allyship with LGBT students, which I am also a fierce and longtime advocate of. Why would DCPS put their literal label on one yet rip down the other?”

Samantha Mathers

Samantha Mathers, Action News Jax

Samantha Mathers is a digital reporter and content creator.