Punishment increased for Johnston County teacher who segregated students based on beliefs

JOHNSTON COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- The punishment was upgraded Wednesday for a Johnston County teacher accused of segregating students in her classroom based on their religious beliefs.

Initially, Julia Lopp, a Spanish teacher at South Johnston High School was suspended with pay.

Now, she's been suspended without pay for 10 school days.

The school district said Lopp has apologized for conducting the activity in violation of school board policy.

"Regardless of the intent, students should never have been asked about personal beliefs," said Dr. Jim Causby, superintendent of Johnston County Schools. "Given Ms. Lopp's willingness to take responsibility for her misjudgment, I believe that she will use this experience to better her instruction for our students at South Johnston High School."

In a statement, the school district said, in part:

"While students were asked to briefly stand on different sides of the room to indicate their responses to various statements, the investigation did not find that Ms. Lopp criticized students for their responses or otherwise segregated them. Nor did it find that Ms. Lopp attempted to conceal the activity from the school or from parents, as was reported.

Ms. Lopp has accepted the recommendation of Dr. Jim Causby, the Superintendent, that she be suspended without pay for 10 school days."
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