What are the requirements for being a teacher looking like nowadays? Asking a question for a friend, because sometimes it looks as if some of these teachers really have no form of diversity training or even common sense.
Our latest cringe-inducing, jaw-dropping example comes out of South Carolina, where a teacher at Oak Pointe Elementary School in Irmo has been placed on administrative leave after asking fifth-grade students to imagine themselves as member as the Ku Klux Klan. “Why do you think your treatment of African Americans is justified?” read the question posed by the teacher on a worksheet, WACH reports.
I am really trying to wrap my head around this question and how it began to even become necessary. Yes, teaching history and about the horrors and hatefulness of the Klan is absolutely necessary and important. But what does attempting to justify the beliefs of the Ku Klux Klan teach? The degradation of and insensitivity toward black students has got to stop, like yesterday.
In a statement released Friday, the school district promised to investigate, announcing that the teacher had been placed on leave:
School District Five is taking this matter very seriously. We took immediate action to investigate once the concerns over the assignment were brought to our attention, and the teacher has been placed on administrative leave as part of our standard personnel investigation procedures. We have been in communication and will continue to be in communication with families to let them know our actions and next steps.
South Carolina standards for 5th grade require lessons on Reconstruction and discriminatory groups including the KKK. We must teach the standard, but we are taking steps to ensure this particular assignment will never be used again in District Five schools.
We understand the seriousness of this matter particularly in light of the events taking place in our country at this time. We want to ensure that our students, parents, staff and community know that we are giving this matter our full attention.
Read more at WACH.