A Maryland Marine was banned from his daughter’s high school after allegedly getting into an argument with the vice principal during a dispute over a homework assignment.
The trouble began when Kevin Wood’s daughter came home from school with a three-page assignment that allegedly asked the students to "list the benefits of Islam." Wood and La Plata High School have differing stories when it comes to the topic of the assignment and the altercation that followed.
Kevin Wood and his wife Melissa believe that schools should not be involved in the teaching of religion, in accordance to the separation of church and state. The use of “God” in the Pledge of Allegiance has been a hotbed topic for some time, but the Wood family feels that somehow Islam is not being held to the same standards.
"I don't force my religious views on them, so don't force your religious views on me," Mr. Wood told KDFW. Mrs. Wood added onto her husband’s statement, saying, "We cannot discuss our Ten Commandments in school, but they can discuss Islam's Five Pillars?"
After seeing the assignment, Kevin Wood went to La Plata High School and met with the vice principal regarding his attitude towards the teaching of Islam. Wood’s and the school’s version of what happened next differ greatly.
According to Katie O'Malley-Simpson, a spokesperson for Charles County Public Schools, Wood threatened the vice principal if he refused to retract the assignment.
"He was threatening to cause a disruption or possible disruption at the school,” said O’Malley. "We're not teaching religion, we're teaching world history.”
O’Malley went on to say that La Plata High School is within its rights to ban Wood from campus, and that he misunderstood the assignment’s purpose and worth to the students in the history class.
Wood contends that he made no threat against any school faculty and that he has a witness to back up his side of the story.
The Wood family has been in talks with school faculty about coming to a resolution over the matter, but according to Mrs. Wood, the damage has already been done in the way of character assassination on her husband.
"They're making him sound like he's some bad person,” she said. “He's not a bad person. He fought for your country.”
The school has agreed to let the Wood family’s daughter sit in the school’s library while the history class is in session.
Photo Credit: WikiCommons/KDFW