TikTok Showing Teacher Having Students Undo His Braids Prompts Investigation in Maryland School District

The educator responded to the backlash, describing himself as an "unconventional teacher."

An empty classroom with desks and chairs stacked upside down on top of them, with light streaming through blinds covering the windows
Rodin Eckenroth / Getty Images
An empty classroom with desks and chairs stacked upside down on top of them, with light streaming through blinds covering the windows

A Maryland school district launched an investigation into a teacher who showed his students taking out his braids during a TikTok livestream.

The teacher, Marquise White has been “reassigned out of the classroom pending the outcome of the investigation," Lynn McCawley, senior public information specialist at Prince George's County Public Schools, told People in a statement.

White reportedly worked at the Maya Angelou French Immersion School in Hillcrest Heights, Maryland. On May 5, he created a post from his TikTok livestream, which shows multiple students removing his braids in the classroom.

In the clip, White shares that he needed help because he had a hair appointment after school. He also addressed people who commented during the livestream who said his actions were inappropriate. As of this writing, the viral TikTok has 8 million views.

@thilluminatin1

Students don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Teaching is a work of heart. Comment your thoughts #teacher #teachersoftiktok #teacherproblems #millenialsoftiktok #middleschool

♬ Chopin Nocturne No.2 Op.9-2(1391533) - 314P

Another video shows a student painting White’s nails.

“The student you see in this video has goals and aspirations to be a nail tech," he said in the voiceover. "Her mom literally watches my videos all the time. Not only does she love my content, but she signed a media release form for her daughter so she can be in my videos."

White responded to the backlash in another TikTok, saying he does “agree” that his behavior was “unprofessional,” but that he is an “eclectic” and “unconventional teacher.”

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