Missouri elementary school principal on leave after gun tweet to Parkland survivor

A Platte County Elementary school principal is on leave because of tweets on his personal account responding to a call for federal funding of gun violence research, Platte County School District spokesperson Laura Hulett said Thursday.

Chad Searcey, principal of Compass Elementary school, was placed on paid administrative leave immediately after the district learned of the tweets on Wednesday. The social media posts were made on Tuesday, according to a news release.

“We understand why the public response has been strong with regard to student safety in our nation’s schools,” the release said. “We intend to address the situation immediately and in a manner consistent with our Board of Education policies, as well as our goal of ensuring a safe and caring environment for our students, staff, and community.”

Hulett confirmed the school placed Searcey on leave, Thursday.

Screen shots posted on Twitter Wednesday show Searcey responding to a post by David Hogg, a survivor of the Parkland, Florida school shooting last year.

In his response Searcey posted three photos of men and children with guns, #Merica is written on one photo, according to the screen shots.

The tweets and Searcey’s account were no longer accessible on the site Thursday morning.

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Katie Bernard covers Kansas crime, cops and courts for the Kansas City Star. She joined the Star in May of 2019. Katie studied journalism and political science at the University of Kansas.