He’s toxic! Texas substitute teacher is ‘relieved of duty’ after turning up to high school with karaoke machine and lights before belting out Britney Spears’ hit from his desk
- The unidentified sub serenaded classroom in Austin, Texas on Friday morning
- School officials asked him to leave campus for failing to follow ‘best practices’
- Video shows him belting out Britney Spears’ Toxic to accompanying light show
- District expresses chagrin and says the performance was ‘a bit much’
The unidentified male substitute was dismissed early on Friday after breaking into song with an accompanying light show during first period at Bowie High School in Austin.
‘I’ve heard worse Britney Spears covers, but the lights are a bit much,’ a chagrined district spokesperson told KAXN-TV.
Video of the incident shows the male substitute sitting behind a desk and wailing away as multi-colored lights dazzle the classroom.
A substitute teacher in Texas has been relieved of his duties after bringing a karaoke machine to class and belting out the Britney Spears hit Toxic
‘I’m addicted to you/Don’t you know that you’re toxic?’ the teacher sings, displaying impressive pipes. ‘And I love what you do/Don’t you know that you’re toxic?’
Though rumors circulated on campus that the man was a prankster posing as a substitute teacher, the district confirmed that he was a registered substitute.
The district also confirmed that the classroom is not normally equipped with a karaoke machine, and that the substitute brought the device to class himself.
The matter is not being considered criminal and the teacher was not arrested. It is unclear if the teacher put on the performance as a joke, or if he just wanted to cheer up his students with his dulcet tones.
But the Austin school district said the teacher was asked to leave after the first period because he ‘wasn’t following [the district’s] best practices.’
The district said that the teacher had passed a background check and was checked in through the front desk before class according to policy.
‘All processes were followed, it was simply a case of a substitute not following our practices,’ the district said.
The unidentified sub was dismissed early on Friday after breaking into song with an accompanying light show during first period at Bowie High School in Austin
Video of the incident shows the male substitute sitting behind a desk and wailing away as multi-colored lights dazzle the classroom
After being ‘relieved of his duty’ the teacher reportedly picked up another job at a different Austin school later on Friday.
No reports of further singing were made.
Schools across the country have been struggling with staffing issues, contributing to a wave of closures.
Last month alone, 8,692 individual schools were affected by closures, which many school districts blamed on ‘staffing issues and mental health reasons’ according to Buribo, an organization that tracks school district websites.
Last week scores of schools closed for the entire week of Thanksgiving in order to reduce strain on their over-stretched staff.
It has led to administrators taking over janitorial tasks and cafeteria duty, as well as filling in in the classroom.
The situation appears to be symptom of the broader labor shortage, after millions dropped out of the workforce during the coronavirus pandemic.
In Portland, Oregon, the teachers union is proposing ‘self-taught Fridays’ where high school students are let out early and teachers are given half-day due to the ‘stresses of resuming full-time in-person classes’.