A vice principal at a middle school in California is facing criticism after he was recorded saying, “I just don’t like the black kids.”
Joseph DiFilippo has worked at the Scandinavian Middle School in Fresno for almost five years. In a 20-second cell phone video, which surfaced on YouTube last Friday, a student asks him who at the school he doesn’t like. Two voices are heard off-camera saying, “Me,” and “All of us.”
Then the vice principal, leaning against a column next to a student, says: “I just don’t like the black kids.” Someone not visible on camera says, “Aw!” before the recording abruptly ends.
“What is depicted in the 18 second video clip is disappointing and doesn’t meet our expectations. This is a very serious matter that is currently under investigation,” Jedidiah Chernabaeff, public information officer for the Fresno Unified School District, wrote in an email to msnbc on Friday. “Once the investigation is completed the District will be in a position to comment further and will appropriately respond based on the results of the investigation.”
While some online commenters suggested DiFilippo was joking, most weren’t laughing. The clip had more than 230,000 page views by Friday morning. The description on YouTube says, “Scandinavian vice principal caught on camera by my nephew talking to black students and telling them he does not like black kids.”
Earlier this week, former students reportedly gathered outside of the school to voice their concern with staff and parents. Some of them chanted: “I love black people” and “black power,” according to The Fresno Bee.