WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Parents of students at Airport High School said Principal David Damm has been placed on administrative leave.
Parents and people connected with the school said this suspension comes in the wake of Damm referring to the students using profanity.
One of the parents said that Damm made the announcement on Tuesday after a series of fights had broken out on Monday and Tuesday. Damm was canceling the school dance that was scheduled for this weekend and made the announcement using profanity over the school’s intercom.
“He was completely fed up. You have to understand that it was fight after fight after fight,” Robin Hook, a parent, said.
“No dance Saturday night either and I’m sorry for those of you who do the right thing, but the dumba**es have ruined it for the rest of you,” the voice said in the recording.
WIS reached out to Lexington Two asking for context around this video. A spokesperson responded that “our board policy on staff conduct addresses the use of profanity in the school setting. Beyond that, we can’t comment on specific personnel matters.”
The policy says: “Employees of the district, while on duty and in the presence of students, will not use profanity.”
One parent posted on Facebook that the superintendent’s office confirmed that Damm is on temporary leave.
WIS followed up asking the district whether Damm is now on leave. The district said they wouldn’t comment beyond their original statement.
One parent said she’s seen multiple videos of the fights breaking out at school this week and was upset to hear Damm is placed on leave.
“I couldn’t understand why. Then, I was told it was because of some foul language used to the students, which in my opinion is completely minor when we are talking about three fights that broke out in one day and were videoed and played on social media,” Hook said.
There seem to be a few different opinions on Damm’s behavior and the action taken by the district to place him on leave. One person said this isn’t the first time he’s used this type of language. So whenever he makes an announcement over the intercom, students whip out their phones.
Others said the school is already understaffed and Damm was doing a good job trying to get the fights that have been breaking out in check.
“I think people need to know that he needs to be back at this school,” Hook said. “Mr. Damm is a great asset to Airport High School and the parents, the students, the facility need him at this school to help with this situation.”
Damm became principal in June 2018 after Brad Coleman resigned amidst allegations that his then assistant principal Dawn Diimmler had an inappropriate relationship with a student.