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Donald Trump Didn't Present This Year's Teacher of the Year Award, and People Are Pretty Sure They Know Why

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 18: U.S. President Donald Trump looks on during an event recognizing the Wounded Warrior Project Soldier Ride in the East Room of the White House, April 18, 2019 in Washington, DC. Today the Department of Justice released special counsel Robert Mueller’s redacted report on Russian election interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Since 1952, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) has bestowed the National Teacher of the Year award to America's most exceptional educator.

This year's recipient is Rodney Robinson—a social studies and history teacher at a juvenile detention center in Richmond, Virginia. Robinson was inspired to teach by his mother, who went to a segregated school and couldn't afford to complete her education.


The CCSSO said of Robinson in a statement:

"He creates a positive school culture by empowering his students -- many of whom have experienced trauma -- to become civically minded social advocates who use their skills and voices to affect physical and policy changes at their school and in their communities."

President Donald Trump, however, did not present Robinson with the award at the ceremony on Monday, bucking a tradition beginning with President Harry Truman. The last three Presidents presented the award every year they were in office and former President George H.W. Bush even flew by helicopter to honor 1991's recipient at the school where she taught.

The first item on Trump's schedule for the day of the ceremony was a 12:45 pm lunch with Vice President Mike Pence.

Though it isn't unprecedented for the President not to present the award, many people are speculating that Trump's snub of the event is due to Robinson's race and for his efforts in combatting the school to prison pipeline.

The incident came days after Trump congratulated the NFL's number two draft pick, Nick Bosa—a white man who once referred to activist and former NFL player Colin Kaepernick as a "clown." However, Trump never acknowledged the number one draft pick, Kyler Murray, who is black.

Some are suggesting that Trump is repeating this pattern by not recognizing Robinson in person.

Though Robinson may go unrecognized by the president, he's being lauded by those the president represents.

Here's to you, Mr. Robinson.