His family said Ahmed Mohamed’s three day suspension for bringing a homemade clock to school ended Thursday but he won’t return to Irving’s MacArthur High School.
“That school is a hostile environment for me. I can’t go there normally anymore,” the high school freshman said on the NBC Today Show Thursday morning.
His sister, Ayisha Mohamed, said Thursday the 14-year-old is still considering options to continue his education.
“It’s going to be a while,” she said. “That’s really bad for him because his education is being put on the line. I think that’s the most important thing right now is to get him back into school.”
His sister said Ahmed was getting extra rest Thursday after the barrage of national media attention that flooded the family with interview requests and filled the family's front lawn with TV cameras Wednesday.
“I’m very happy about the support he’s getting and I’m happy that people see what happened, what was wrong here,” she said.
Mohamed was handcuffed and taken from MacArthur High School by Irving police Monday after teachers saw the homemade clock that he said he brought to show his talent for building things.
Irving police dropped the investigation of a "hoax bomb" Wednesday after concluding the student intended no harm.
Officer James McLellan said Thursday the family is free now to recover the clock that was seized as evidence, but the family has not kept appointments for meetings to do so.
Irving police and school officials have said they handled the situation properly in an abundance of caution.
Irving Independent School District Communications Director Lesley Weaver said there is more information, but it cannot be released without a privacy waiver from the family.
“All they have to do is sign a release form and we’ll be able to give a different perspective of what happened that day in the classroom and the hours following,” she said.
Weaver also said Thursday that school officials did not actually believe the clock was a bomb and that’s why there was no evacuation of the school.
“It was determined very quickly that this was not an explosive device. However, it had the perception that could have been, which is why we had to take action. Students are prohibited from bringing things to school that could be perceived as a threat,” Weaver said.
She denied racism influenced the case and said a similar incident in the future would be handled in the same manner.
“It is a little bit hard to watch social media because I don’t think people are fully informed,” Weaver said.
Mohamed family members declined to discuss a privacy waiver. They were still considering possible legal representation over the incident and national television interview requests Thursday.
“All this media stuff is overwhelming and then people are speaking on behalf of him,” Ayisha Mohamed said.
Ahmed Mohamed has accepted the president’s invitation for a visit to the White House, but a date has not been set.
Dozens of people arrived for a vigil Thursday night outside MacArthur High School, where Ahmed Mohamed's father thanked the crowd and talked about how his 14-year-old son is becoming a name known around the world.
"There are people far away," said Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed. "All of them are united because of what happened to my son."
"My son was put in a room without his father, without his parents. They didn't call me," the teen's father continued. "The school did not call me."
Thursday night, the Irving police chief addressed the issue at a city council meeting.
"I'm pleased to inform you, Mayor and council, that the Irving Islamic Center leadership is committed to a positive relationship with the Irving P.D. and I will pledge to you that I can commit to that as well," said Irving Police Chief Larry Boyd.
Meanwhile, outside MacArthur High School, there were prayers and clear signs that many strongly stand behind Ahmed Mohamed.
"I know you know the story and the world knows the story," his father said. "But we will repeat it and repeat it until justice is done."
Ahmed Mohamed still has not gotten his homemade clock back from police, who say he's allowed to get it now. His father says they plan to pick the clock up Friday or next week.