A private school in Bronxville, New York is under fire after a fifth grade teacher decided to teach her students about slavery by doing a mock a slave auction. Now The Chapel School is being forced to diversify their staff and student body — sounds like some teachers need to be fired before they are diversified.
NBC News reports in March a parent complained about a white teacher who had white students bid on and “buy” Black students that were told to pretend pretend to be slaves. The site reports, “A teacher asked all of the African American students to raise their hands, and then instructed them to exit the classroom and stand in the hallway. The teacher then placed imaginary chains or ‘shackles,’ on these students’ necks, wrists and ankles, and had them walk back into the classroom.”
This reportedly happened in two separate fifth-grade social studies classes.
Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement, “The investigation found that the teacher’s re-enactments in the two classes had a profoundly negative effect on all of the students present — especially the African American students — and the school community at large. Following the re-enactments, the school terminated the teacher’s employment.”
She also said, “Every young person — regardless of race — deserves the chance to attend school free of harassment, bias and discrimination. Lessons designed to separate children on the basis of race have no place in New York classrooms, or in classrooms throughout this country. I thank The Chapel School for agreeing to take measures that directly address the issues of race, diversity and inclusion at the school.”
NBC News reports these measures require the “develop and submit a staff diversification plan for increasing minority representation among faculty and retain a diversity consultant for help educating students and school employees about racial and ethnic diversity in the educational setting.”
The school has annual tuition that costs up to $14,000 and now they will commit to new financial aid to increase diversity among the students. They will also need to submit a new code of conduct for “addressing racial and ethnic discrimination and harassment, as well as other prohibited behaviors” to Attorney General Letitia James.
Sadly, balanat racism from white teachers is an ongoing theme. Earlier this month, four first grade teachers and a principal at Summerwind Elementary School in Palmdale, California were suspended after a photo of them laughing and holding a noose was leaked.
In March, WECT-TV reported that a North Carolina woman was outraged that her granddaughter’s fourth grade teacher had Black students play a role-playing game that included chains, plantations and simulated punishment for slaves who tried to run away to freedom.
In February, a Northern Virginia elementary school came under fire for its Underground Railroad game that divided students into groups that were challenged to escape to freedom by moving through an obstacle course that included plastic hoops.
This is America.