Bellamy resigns from Virginia Board of Education

Governor was “horrified” by profane tweets

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Charlottesville Vice Mayor Wes Bellamy

Courtesy City of Charlottesville

Charlottesville Vice Mayor Wes Bellamy announced his immediate resignation from the Virginia Board of Education Wednesday, following recent criticism of profane tweets he posted from 2009 to 2014.

“I would like to redirect my attention and focus to my family, the children and young people whom I serve, and to the City of Charlottesville,” Bellamy said in his statement.

This news follows media reports that Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s spokesperson said the governor was “horrified” by the tweets.

Bellamy’s past tweets included gay slurs, profanity describing women’s genitalia, anti-white language and descriptions of sexual assault.

McAuliffe appointed Bellamy to the State Board of Education in March.

Earlier on Wednesday, Del. Steve Landes (R-Weyers Cave), chairman of the House of Delegates Education Committee, had called on Bellamy to resign.

“The type of language used by Mr. Bellamy is unacceptable, and certainly disqualifies him from serving on the Board of Education,” Landes said in a statement.

This announcement also comes a day after Albemarle County Public Schools had announced Bellamy was on administrative leave from his job as a computer science teacher at Albemarle High School.

“As is standard procedure while an investigation is underway, and in the best interests of all who are involved, we agree with Mr. Bellamy’s decision to take administrative leave until such time as our investigation has been completed,” Albemarle County School Board chair Kate Acuff said in the statement.

Bellamy apologized for the tweets in a Facebook post Sunday evening.

“Elected officials should be held to a higher standard, and while I was not in office at the time, in this instance I came up short of the man I aspire to be,” Bellamy said.

Mayor Mike Signer weighed in on the controversy Tuesday, saying he was “deeply troubled” by the tweets.

“As a first step, I’m glad Mr. Bellamy has apologized. Going forward, Mr. Bellamy was elected by the citizens of Charlottesville, and it’s the citizens who should weigh in now,” Signer said in a statement on his Facebook page. “I can only say that I will continue to work with all members of the Council to bring tolerance and compassion to our community both inside and outside our chambers."

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