Student, 17, excluded from college 'after sharing meme mocking Shamima Begum'

Leo Shepherd, who describes himself as a 'relatively good student', says he was told not to return for his second year of A-Levels

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A 17-year-old student claims he was excluded from college after sharing a meme which compared Shamima Begum to the Ku Klux Klan.

Leo Shepherd, a student at Burnley College, says he was told by the school’s principal not to return for his second year of A-Levels because “it won’t work”.

Leo says teachers have previously said he’s “a pleasure to teach”, while also claiming to be a “relatively good student”.

Leo Shepherd and Nigel Farage
Leo Shepherd and Nigel Farage

Speaking on GB News’ Farage, he said: “I get on with stuff, the work and I do what I’m told and I don’t cause trouble unlike the mainstream.”

Leo claims he was originally placed on home learning after making a comment about former Prime Minister Tony Blair and the Iraq War.

He explained to Nigel: “Me taking a hit at Tony Blair and all the absolute pain and suffering he caused over the 20 years that the Iraq war went on.

“He was only the Prime Minister for a bit of it, but he played such a major part in causing such a strategy.

“I said he should’ve got it all done with at the beginning, rather than dragging it on for 20 years.”

Leo shared a meme which compared Shamima Begum to the Ku Klux Klan
Leo shared a meme which compared Shamima Begum to the Ku Klux Klan

Nigel asked: “Had you often made these types of comments?”

Before Leo replied: “No not really, I’ve never been in trouble before, I’ve never even been looked at by a teacher for comments on anything else.

“It was a big surprise and a first time experience.”

The college then also found that Leo had shared a meme on Twitter which compared Jihadi bride Shamima Begum and ISIS to the Ku Klux Klan.

Leo said: “One of my fellow students decided to bring it to the college’s attention after the Iraq comments because the college asked them to look into my social media and asked if there was anything that needed bringing to their attention despite it being posted and seen a year prior.

“The principal told me she doesn’t want me to return for the second year, because they believe it won’t work and they don’t want me there essentially.

“They said they will help me get into a different college.”

In a statement, a spokesperson for Burnley College told GB News: "We have a duty of care to all our students, past and present, and strive to provide the safest learning environment in accordance with our Code of Conduct.

“The college disagrees with the points made. However, we are unable to make reference to individual cases and are therefore unable to comment further.”