Maryland school fires teacher over connections to alt-right
A teacher at Maryland’s Academy of the Holy Cross has been fired after the school discovered evidence he is a member of a white supremacist group.
Greg Conte, a substitute teacher and field hockey and track coach at the all-girls Catholic school, was reportedly fired in October, but the school sent a letter alerting families of the firing just last week.
Conte appears to use the name “Gregory Ritter” on Twitter, where he has posted a number of controversial tweets that could be considered racist and anti-Semitic, including one that said “Hitler did not commit any crimes,” according to Washington, D.C.’s Fox 5.
“Prior to his firing, he was successfully using an alternate identity in his work with his atrocious group,” school president and CEO Kathleen Prebble wrote in the letter. “As for his potential impact on our girls, I conducted an investigation at the time of his firing and determined there was no reason to think that he negatively influenced any of our girls with his philosophy.”
Conte works for prominent white nationalist Richard Spencer’s National Policy Institute and is a part of Spencer’s security team. He attended the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., last summer where one woman was killed.
Conte told Fox 5 that he does not have any regrets about his involvement in the group after being fired from the school.
“The school’s just trying to protect its own position, I get why they’re doing that,” Conte said. “They are put in an awkward position where they have employed somebody with whom they had no problem, and whose views did not at all adversely affect their school’s operations.”
Students described the discovery of Conte’s alt-right ties as “shocking,” with one telling Fox 5, “I wouldn’t think that in this century that there’s still people like that out there.”
In a statement to The Hill, the Academy of the Holy Cross said it only made the issue public after Conte did.
“He was not fired after students discovered his ‘alt-right’ connection, he was fired in October after the school discovered his ‘alt-right’ connection. Following standard employment law and policies, we did not make this issue public until Mr. Conte made it an issue for himself. Our president communicated this information with our families on Thursday after Mr. Conte had made the information public and his social media postings were found by members of our community,” the statement read.
—Updated at 2:37 p.m.