Family of Black 5-Year-Old Says Arkansas Teacher Made Him Clean Out Clogged Toilet With His Hands

Illustration for article titled Family of Black 5-Year-Old Says Arkansas Teacher Made Him Clean Out Clogged Toilet With His Hands
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It’s deeply despairing to be continually reminded of how inhumanely Black children are likely to be treated in this country.

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On the heels of the news that a 13-year-old middle schooler in Plano, Texas, underwent racist bullying—including allegedly being forced to drink urine by his classmates—comes an Arkansas family’s complaint that a kindergarten teacher made their child dig through a toilet clogged with feces.

Ashley Murry of Little Rock, Arkansas, shared the disturbing allegations with KARK News on Tuesday, saying her 5-year-old son was made to put his bare hands in a dirty toilet by his teacher at Crystal Hill Elementary School after it was clogged up.

“It’s degrading for a child so I don’t feel like any child should have to go through this,” said Murry.

According to a post made by the child’s grandmother on Facebook, the teacher allegedly made the boy put his hand in the toilet “and clean out his feces and tissue” because he had clogged it.

Anyone who could do that to a child, not to mention any teacher who could do that to a child in their classroom, is a person with a deep streak of cruelty and sadism in my opinion. Both those traits are historically related to racism, and the child’s grandmother raised the issue of his race in her response to the egregious incident.

“This child is 5 years old in kindergarten,” Tami Murry posted. “He is a young Black male and this was done to degrade him, belittle him, and it will cause him to have anxiety, he keeps telling everyone what happened.”

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The Murrys are now calling for the teacher’s termination. Speaking of calling, the child’s mother said the teacher talked to her on the phone about the incident.

“She said she didn’t have an explanation, she just knew she was wrong. But she stated to the principal that she was trying to teach how not to stop up the toilet,” said Murry.

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She didn’t have an explanation. Luckily, I have a few—see the earlier mentions of cruelty, sadism and racism.

The Pulaski County Special School District told The Root in a statement that the teacher is on administrative leave pending an investigation of the incident. They would not disclose the name of the teacher, who uncorroborated reports online have identified as a white woman, citing district policy for “disciplinary personnel matters.”

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“Employees across the district work hard every day to create an environment where students feel safe and protected,” the statement from the school district said.

It sure doesn’t sound like that’s the case.

We’ll continue to follow this story, and we have reached out to the family to see if they plan to take any further steps in demanding accountability for the horrendous treatment of the young child.

Writer, speaker, finesser, and a fly dresser. Jamaican-American currently chilling in Chicago.

DISCUSSION

sle1570
Gameface doesn`t play nice with others

White folk will always say we claim racism where there isn’t racism. In this particular incident, we don’t really know (although strongly suspect) that this assumably white woman had some racial bias that drove her to inexplicably command a 5-year old to put his hands in the toilet filled with his own shit. What we do know, however, is that that school has a custodial staff. I was a teacher for over 20 years in public school and private and I have NEVER worked in an institution where a custodial STAFF was not ever-present for exactly this sort of thing. you would think that this happens on a regular basis in an environment where ...I dunno, 5-year olds... haven’t learned the courtesy flush etiquette yet. Additionally, why in the actual fuck didn’t she at least get him a plunger, some gloves (during COVID it’s not like they don’t have them) or any kind of tool to properly unclog a SHIT-FILLED TOILET??? This is wrong on many many many levels. It matters that he is Black to me, but it shouldn’t matter in this particular instance because wrong is wrong. Periodt.

And btw, because I’m petty, I would find out where she lives and throw shit on her front door every week for a month. And her car. Definitely on her car. when she goes to leave home for work, shit on the car. When she is leaving work, shit on the car. When visiting her mother at a nursing home...SHIT ON THE CAR. Because I’m petty.