District: Teacher showed video with inappropriate political, sexual content

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BEDFORD -

A Bedford teacher has been suspended after the school says he showed a video with inappropriate political and sexual content.

The video in question is called "Fox News: The Truth About Sex and College."

The Bedford Central School District says longtime Fox Lane High School teacher Michael Poplardo showed the video to students last school year, which has now resulted in a one-month suspension without pay.

Some current and former students disagree with his punishment, with one supporter creating a GoFundMe page to help Poplardo pay for family expenses. They say the video was intended to prepare students for pitfalls they may face in college.

The district issued a two-page statement to "set the record straight."

They say the video "contains inappropriate sexual content and presents a one-sided biased political viewpoint," by arguing "that college policies against sexual harassment are used by feminist ideologues to manipulate female students into making false claims of rape, resulting in the unfair persecution of men."

The district also stated they offered Poplardo a settlement of a fine, training and counseling, which they say he refused, before an independent hearing officer got involved issuing the suspension.

Poplardo tells News 12 the settlement was more than that and it includes stripping him of his job as the school’s JV girls soccer and softball coach, removal as the advisor of the debate team, and requires waving his rights to file suits against the district for discrimination. He says the emotional cost of giving up his identity as a coach was “unmeasurable,” a reason he turned down the settlement.

He says he's filed court papers to try and overturn the suspension, but he says he's thankful for the outpouring of support online.

His suspension is set to end Feb. 2.

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