Gwinnett County school rallies around Muslim teacher after threatening note

ATLANTA — A threatening note left in the classroom of a Muslim teacher has likely had a different impact than the author intended.

The language arts teacher at Dacula High School in Gwinnett County discovered the handwritten note on Friday.

The note read, “Your headscarf isn’t allowed anymore. Why don’t you tie it around your neck and hang yourself with it off your neck instead of your head.” It was signed, “America.”

Students say they’re rallying around the teacher, Mairah Teli.

“When I look at her, I don’t see a Muslim. I see a nice lady, a teacher,” said student Allison Ferguson.

Administrators said they’re determined to find who wrote it.


“It’s just kind of crazy that someone would take it that extremely, to actually go and put a note on her desk like that,” student Noah Phillips said.

Principal Bryan Long wrote to students and parents, saying, “Let’s rally around Ms. Teli and show her that this note is not America, or Dacula.”

Teli first publicized the note on Facebook, saying she wanted to bring awareness to what was going on.

Referring to the election, she wrote, “Spreading hate isn’t going to make America great again.”

She recently updated her post and thanked the school and others across the country for support.

“Love trumps hate, it does. I want them to know that,” Ferguson said.

District administrators say they believe the note came from a student at Dacula High School.