A Florida community college has launched an investigation and placed a tenured professor on leave over reports that she made students in a math class sign a pledge to vote for President Obama.
A spokesman for Brevard Community College told Fox News that Sharon Sweet was placed on an unpaid leave of absence effective immediately after they received a call from a concerned parent.
“The allegations center on her soliciting support in her classes for President Obama in the upcoming election,” said college spokesman John Glisch in a statement to Fox News.
The website Watchdogwire.com, which first reported the allegations, said the students were told to sign a pledge that read: “I pledge to vote for President Obama and Democrats up and down the ticket.”
They were also given bookmarks from gottavote.org – a website paid for by the Obama-Biden campaign — targeting young voters, the website reported.
Glisch said they learned of the incident last Thursday and launched an immediate investigation. He said they plan on interviewing as many as 100 students to determine who may have signed the pledge.
“The college has specific policies that address the political activities of faculty and staff, which state that no college employee shall solicit support for a political candidate during regular college work hours or on college property,” Glisch said.
He said Sweet asked for — and was granted an immediate leave of absence without pay — effective immediately.
Sweet is a tenured professor who has been at the college for five years, he said. Depending on the outcome of the investigation, she could be exonerated, suspended or terminated.
Glisch said steps are also being taken to make sure all faculty and staff are aware of policies on political activity.