Columbia Heights school board member to resign after flap over anti-Muslim remarks

Columbia Heights School Board Member Grant Nichols says he will resign his position Tuesday, after a lengthy community discussion over disparaging remarks about Muslims posted on his Facebook page.

Nichols had initially claimed that someone else posted the remarks. There were student protests on the matter and many calls for his resignation.

Today, statements from the state House of Representatives and the Council on American Islamic Relations indicate that Nichols met with local officials and Muslim representatives and told them he will resign.

State Rep. Carolyn Laine, a DFLer from Columbia Heights, was at the meeting and quoted Nichols’ resignation letter:

 I take responsibility for the online Facebook comment about some of my co-workers at my full-time job in Chanhassen that was offensive to the Muslim community. I apologize to them all for the hurt it caused. I care very much about the students of this district; so in order to end the current turmoil for the good of the district and its students, I will resign on Tuesday…

CAIR-MN Executive Director Jaylani Hussein said in a statement:

We welcome Mr. Nichols’ apology and resignation from the school board and wish him well in his future endeavors. Now is the time for the community to come together to heal and to promote an environment leading to educational success and achievement.

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