By Associated Press - Wednesday, June 3, 2020

GRAND LEDGE, Mich. (AP) - A Michigan school superintendent said he’ll get diversity training after partly blaming George Floyd for his fatal encounter with police.

Brian Metcalf, leader of the Grand Ledge school district, said on Facebook that Floyd’s death in Minneapolis was “wrong.” But he also said “it all starts with being a law abiding citizen,” and that Floyd was suspected of using counterfeit money.

“I am deeply sorry for the statement that I posted,” Metcalf said Tuesday. “As the leader of a school district that seeks to encourage diversity and be welcoming to all, my words fell far short.”

The school board said it was deeply concerned about Metcalf’s social media post but won’t fire him.

“There is no place for it among the leaders in Grand Ledge schools, who are expected to value diversity and inclusion,” the board said. “However, we do not believe the statement reflects his capability to learn and grow from this matter. Superintendent Metcalf has apologized and informed the board that he will be taking sensitivity training.”

The Grand Ledge district is west of Lansing. About 40 people protested at the district’s headquarters on Monday.

Floyd, who was black and handcuffed, died May 25 after a white Minneapolis police officer used his knee to pin down Floyd’s neck for several minutes while Floyd gasped for air and eventually stopped moving. Police were arresting Floyd on a charge of suspicion of having passed a counterfeit bill.

A parent, Matt Newburg, said he doesn’t think the school board is doing enough.

“This guy is deciding to save himself by attending a class. If he doesn’t understand in his position and at his age that it was extremely offensive, a class isn’t going to fix it,” Newburg told the Lansing State Journal.

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