Teacher in trouble over Facebook comment about missing 5-year-old
VINELAND — A teacher has been removed from the classroom after making a comment on Facebook about a 5-year-old girl who police believe may have been abducted from Bridgeton last week.
District officials said Wednesday that they were made aware of an "offensive and unacceptable social media post allegedly made by a district employee" and that they began an investigation, which discovered the post was made by a teacher. The district did not disclose the teacher's identity in its statement.
The teacher was identified by the Vineland Daily Journal as Jennifer Hewitt Bishop, an in-class resource teacher, who was reacting to a report that Dulce Maria Alavez's mother was sitting in a car while her daughter and son played on the nearby playground at a Bridgeton park.
A school official told the Vineland Daily Journal the comment read: “They’re Mexican, it’s their culture. They don’t supervise their children like we do.”
The child went missing from the park on Sept. 16 and witnesses told police that she was seen walking toward a red van with a man, according to Bridgeton police.
Dulce remained missing Wednesday morning and was at the top of the FBI's Most Wanted Kidnapping and Missing Person List.
The district said that "appropriate action" was taken and an "outcome" will be reached after discussion with the Board of Education's Personnel Committee.
According to public records Bishop had been with the district for seven years at the John H. Winslow Elementary School at a salary of $57,983.
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