White Teacher Shouldn’t Have Used N-Word

Weighing in on the controversy surrounding a teacher's use of the n-word in a classroom, Chicago Sun-Times columnist Mary Mitchell says it is hard for a black person to embrace a so-called teachable moment from a white person.

If the white Chicago Public Schools teacher really wanted to have a healthy discussion about racism, he should not have used the n-word in his majority-black sixth-grade class, writes Chicago Sun-Times columnist Mary Mitchell. 

In an exclusive interview with the Sun-Times, Brown said “he used the n-word in front of his majority African-American class at Murray Language Academy on Oct. 4 last year after one of his students passed a note to a girl with rap lyrics including the n-word.”

Brown used the incident to talk to his 11-year-old students about the negative impact of the racial slur.

Brown’s lawsuit alleges he was using the n-word when the school’s principal, Gregory Mason, walked into the classroom.

Brown was later cited for using “verbally abusive language to or in front of students” and “cruel, immoral, negligent or criminal conduct or communication.”

A CPS hearing officer ruled Brown had “engaged in inappropriate discussions with sixth-grade students during instructional time.”

Officials with the Chicago Board of Education issued a statement Friday saying Brown’s lawsuit “is without merit.”

Obviously, most sixth-graders have heard the ugly slur.

Still, Brown overstepped his boundaries.