Maryland Catholic Girls High School Fires Teacher Who Is a Leader in the 'Alt-Right': Head of School - NBC4 Washington

Maryland Catholic Girls High School Fires Teacher Who Is a Leader in the 'Alt-Right': Head of School

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    Catholic Girls High School Says It Fired 'Alt-Right' Teacher

    A Catholic all-girls high school in Maryland fired a substitute teacher and coach after learning he is a member of the alt-right movement. Mark Segraves reports. (Published Friday, Jan. 5, 2018)

    A Catholic all-girls high school in Maryland fired a substitute teacher and coach after learning he is a member of the so-called "alt-right" movement, the head of school told News4.

    Academy of the Holy Cross in Kensington sent parents and guardians a letter after learning students were finding out about Greg Conte through social media.

    Head of School Kathleen Prebble held a meeting with students about Conte Friday.

    "This was not about politics," she told News4. "I told the students this is about extremism and hate."

    Conte said he wasn't surprised to be fired but added he was disappointed, because he enjoyed his time at Holy Cross.

    "I think they fired me, because they were afraid of negative backlash in the media," he said.

    Prebble said she received an anonymous tip about Conte in October. He admitted working for the "alt-right" movement -- an offshoot of conservatism mixing racism, white nationalism, anti-Semitism and populism -- when she confronted him, and she fired him.

    "My gut was very clear. His belief system is entirely in opposition to ours," Prebble said.

    Before he was fired, Conte used the fake name Greg Ritter to work with the "alt-right," Prebble said. He never lied to the school about his real name.

    "I wanted to do it anonymously, because there are huge social costs to being publicly in favor of 'alt-right' positions," Conte said.

    Conte is an outspoken advisor to white nationalist Richard Spencer. Conte was with Spencer at the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August where counter protest groups clashed with ralliers and a car plowed into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing one.

    The school said there's no reason to believe he influenced any students with his philosphy.

    Conte started working at Holy Cross in August 2014. He coached the junior varsity track team.

    School officials said there were never problems with his work nor complaints from students or parents.

    "There's going to come a time where institutions, whether that's schools or employers, just have to say, 'I don't care,'" Conte said.