Charlotte mother Suzette Henderson (pictured) claims a gym teacher at her son’s school, Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) made a joke about his skin color, WSOCTV reports.
Though it reportedly happened last month, Henderson says she learned about the incident during a meeting, included her son, an administrator and his physical education teacher-Meghan Beltz, at Hough High last Thursday.
According to Henderson, her son said that the teacher made a comment about his skin color during class. Beltz then admitted to having made the comment:
“That’s when the PE teacher, Miss Beltz, spoke up and said, ‘Yeah, we were having a discussion in class about different types of cancer and being in the sun, and I told Daron [that] dark as he is, if he stays in the sun a lot he’s going [to] be nothing but a shadow,'” Henderson said.
Watch Suzette Henderson discuss the comments here:
Henderson says her son laughed along with the joke to mask his displeasure, but the school administrator apparently knew about the joke before last Thursday’s meeting, telling her that Beltz had already apologized to her son.
Still, Henderson said that even the principal was unaware of the comment until recently, “We talked and she said she was going to get to the bottom of that because she wasn’t going to accept that in her school,” Henderson said.
A spokesperson for CMS confirmed that Henderson’s meeting happened. Consequently, Beltz has been suspended with pay, pending outcome of an internal investigation in to the comments.
Henderson hopes the district and school work on stopping similar incidents from occurring down the line.
“If you can’t teach everybody on an equal basis, you don’t need to be teaching at all,” Henderson said. “You need to find something else to do.”
Though CMS does not have a set policy banning racist comments, it does have one against student harassment by employees.
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