Teacher on leave after 'I want to kill children' messages go viral

Posted at 1:23 AM, Dec 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-07 01:23:01-05

COMMERCE CITY, CO (KDVR/CNN) – While some are saying a Colorado teacher’s allegedly threatening notes to his students should be taken as a joke, others, including the school district, want the matter taken seriously.

Kris Burghart, an eighth-grade teacher at Otho E. Stuart Middle School in Commerce City, CO, was placed on administrative leave starting Tuesday.

The teacher allegedly typed at least two messages to his students that talk about wanting to kill children and projected them on a screen in the classroom.

"Silent reading ... I want to kill children but I am a loving Christian man who never would hurt a flee (sic) so please sit down and read," Burghart allegedly typed in one post.

Images of the messages were sent to school administrators.

“I was really concerned for my student’s safety as soon as I read it,” said one mother, who wanted to remain anonymous.

She and other parents expressed alarm over the messages, saying they’re surprised the teacher would do something like this.

“I do really feel like there’s definite disciplinary action that needs to take place,” the mother said.

However, at least one parent feels Burghart simply reached his breaking point in a school where students reportedly often require disciplinary actions.

Still others believe the messages were meant as jokes.

The school district says it is nevertheless taking the situation seriously as it investigates. Burghart is suspended indefinitely during the investigation process.

“We all have bad days, but as a person in a position of trust with our students, it doesn’t matter how bad your day is. You don’t speak that way. You don’t write that way. You don’t put anything up for the students to read like that,” the concerned mother said.

Burghart has not commented on the matter.

The school principal says the students were never in any danger.

Copyright 2017 KDVR, Otho E. Stuart Middle School via CNN. All rights reserved.