Akron Public Schools officials held a termination hearing Monday morning for a suspended Firestone High School teacher accused of posting racist comments on his personal Facebook page.
Music instructor David Spondike, 51, has been on paid leave in the aftermath of his social media posts in late October that used the N-word and contained other inflammatory comments. The posts came after Spondike said he witnessed a black teen urinating outside his Copley Township home on the day the township held its treat-or-treating, Oct. 27.
The posts were copied and anonymously sent to school officials and the media the following morning. Spondike was removed from the classroom Oct. 28.
Five days later, Spondike went on YouTube and denied writing the posts. He indicated that the son of a family friend had accessed his Facebook page without his knowledge and had posted the comments.
In other videos, Spondike criticized the media for “lying” to the public and failing to get his side of the story. He also told viewers he was not racist and had many black friends.
On Nov. 21, however, Spondike reversed course and said it was him who posted the comments. His admission, in a letter to school administrators, came on the day he was to appear at an investigative hearing, which he then opted not to attend.
In his letter, Spondike also said he has sought counseling for anger management in the hopes of one day returning to the classroom and defended his right to make the slurs, contending they were written off school time.
Officials will take the information gathered at Monday’s termination hearing and will make a recommendation to the Akron Board of Education, which will render a final decision.
The board’s next scheduled meeting is Dec. 9.
Spondike repeatedly has declined to comment on the case. APS officials had no immediate comment Monday.
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