In the video, the parent details what his daughter told him had transpired in the class.
“So this week, he allowed himself to tell them, the Muslims, Muslim students raise your hands,” the parents says. “So they raised their hands, and he said, ‘right, leave the class.’ So my daughter refused to leave and asked him, ‘why?’ And he said he was going to show a photo that would shock them. And then he showed them a naked man, telling them it was the prophet.”
Another parent, Carine Mendes, 41, whose child had attended the class, offered a more nuanced view of what happened. She called the teacher “a very sweet person, in his words, in his expressions.”
Ms. Mendes said the teacher had suggested to Muslim students who did not want to see the cartoon that they leave the classroom temporarily, and had asked those who remained not to tell their Muslim classmates about the cartoon in order not to offend their faith.
“He really tried to do things with respect, he didn’t want to hurt anyone,” she said.
But in a second class where the teacher gave the course, a shocked student refused to leave the room and told her father about what happened. He was the father who later complained in the video posted online.
The next day, the teacher apologized to his students and the principal sent an email message to parents to try to clear up the situation. The teacher’s suggestion to leave the classroom, the principal said, had been insensitive.
“Without wanting to offend anyone, it turned out that by offering this possibility to the students, he still offended the student,” the principal’s email read.
Ms. Mendes said that what happened “was awful.”
“He was just giving a course on freedom of expression,” she said.
“A teacher was killed just for doing his job,” Sophie Venetitay, a teachers’ union official, told BFM.
Constant Méheut and Antonella Francini contributed reporting.