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School & District Management

Texas Superintendent Who Said ‘You Can’t Count on a Black Quarterback’ Resigns

By Denisa R. Superville — September 24, 2018 1 min read

A white superintendent in Texas who criticized a black NFL quarterback in a controversial social media post has resigned.

Lynn Redden, the former superintendent of the Onalaska school district, had faced criticism since Monday, Sept. 17, when he made the comment on the Houston Chronicle’s Facebook page.

Redden’s remarks came after the Houston Texans’ loss to the Tennessee Titans after Deshaun Watson, who is black, let the clock run down before completing a pass, according to the Houston Chronicle.

“That may have been the most inept quarterback decision I’ve seen in the NFL,” Redden reportedly wrote, according to the paper. “When you need precision decision making you can’t count on a black quarterback.”

Redden thought he was responding to a friend’s private message, the paper said. The former superintendent apologized last week as the furor over his comments grew, but even that apology was seen by some as problematic. He resigned on Saturday, the paper reported.

“As an educator, this experience has taught me that I still have a lot to learn,” Redden wrote in his resignation letter, according to a copy posted on ABC 13, a local ABC affiliate. “My comments were not only uninformed but also hurtful and I understand now why they were offensive to so many people.

He also apologized to Watson.

Redden wrote that the comments were “wrong and inappropriate” and were an embarrassment to him, his family, friends, and the district. He also said that he hoped that he would be remembered for his 42-plus-years education career.

Redden also served as the civil rights and Title IX coordinators in the 1,025-student district. In 2016, fewer than two percent of the Onalaska students were African American, according to state education data.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the District Dossier blog.