On Monday, he wanted to show his work to his engineering teacher but was warned to keep the clock in his backpack.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Obama used his Twitter account to speak out about the incident and invite him to an astronomy event involving other students interested in science because his teachers had “failed him” and based their actions on personal “biases”.
Obama praised Ahmed Mohamed, saying more kids should be inspired to like science.
That’s shameful. And until we can all recognize everyone among us as the bold, creative, American minds of the future, we’re at risk of losing much of what makes us great.
The White House invitation was shortly afterwards followed by an invitation from Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg to visit the social media network’s offices.
Ahmed Mohamed, 14, was handcuffed and taken away from his school in Irving, Texas, earlier this week after school officials grew suspicious of a digital clock he had made in a pencil case over the weekend. “Keep building”.
“My hobby is to invent stuff”, the boy told The Dallas Morning News in a video posted on the paper’s website that was filmed in his electronics-filled bedroom. It was really easy.
At the centre, police searched Mohamed again, took a mugshot, and took his fingerprints before releasing him. Ahmed is brown-skinned and Muslim.
“Around 3 p.m. yesterday, a MacArthur High School student was arrested on campus by the Irving Police Department”.
“Ahmed, if you ever want to come by Facebook, I’d love to meet you”, Zuckerberg posted. “He is an excited kid who is very bright and wants to share it with his teachers”. When it beeped in his bag during English class, the teacher insisted that it “looks like a bomb”.
At the Wednesday news conference, a spokeswoman for the Irving Independent School District told reporters that the way the teen’s experience has been described in media reports is “unbalanced”.
“I am grateful to the United States of America”, he said, attributing the widespread support to “something that was touching the heart for everybody”. He was pulled from class and taken to a room with five police officers and the principal.
“I asked if I could talk to or speak to my son and they told me, “No, not right now” because they were taking his fingerprints and asking him questions”, Mohamed said.
The boy’s family said Ahmed was suspended for three days.
They also questioned the police comment that Mohamed did not provide a “broader explanation” for the device.