Florida High School Principal Who Supported Holocaust Denial Is Fired

AP/Ariel Schalit
AP Photo/Ariel Schalit

A high school principal in Boca Raton, Florida, has been terminated over an email conversation in which he refused to admit that the Holocaust is a historical fact.

According to a report by the New York Times, Spanish River Community High School Principal William Latson has been fired over his decision to question whether or not the Holocaust actually happened. Latson made the remarks that led to his termination in an email conversation with a parent that was concerned about the lack of Holocaust education at the high school.

“Not everyone believes the Holocaust happened,” Laton said in the email, which was sent in 2018. “And you have your thoughts, but we are a public school and not all of our parents have the same beliefs.”

“I can’t say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee,” Latson added.

Latson apologized after his remarks were published in a local paper.“I regret that the verbiage that I used when responding to an email message from a parent, one year ago, did not accurately reflect my professional and personal commitment to educating all students about the atrocities of the Holocaust,” Latson wrote.

Local school board chairman Frank A. Barbieri Jr. says that the school district is doubling down on its Holocaust education programming in the aftermath of Latson’s ouster. Students at Spanish River Community High School will now be asked to read Night by Elie Wiesel, a book which documents Wiesel’s personal experience during the Holocaust.

“Every generation must recognize, and learn from, the atrocities of the Holocaust’s incomprehensible suffering and the enduring stain that it left on humankind,” Barbieri Jr. said. “It is only through high-quality education, and thought-provoking conversations, that history won’t repeat itself.”

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