A Texas teacher claims she had no idea she’d chosen a misspelled racial slur to nickname one of her racially mixed classes.
The white teacher gave each of her sixth-grade classes a nickname and laid out a set of goals for students at Bell Manor Elementary School in suburban Fort Worth, reported KDFW-TV.
A parent said he learned his son’s class had been nicknamed the “jigaboos,” although the teacher misspelled the racial slur for black people, when he asked about his child’s day at school.
So the father, who asked to remain anonymous in the TV report, went to school and photographed the laminated sign, which read: “Mrs. _______’s Jighaboos are at school today to achieve our 6th grade goals and prepare for 7th grade.”
“She makes them recite that out loud,” said the father, who is white.
Officials from Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District said they had apologized to the father who photographed the sign, which they agreed was not appropriate for school use.
“[We] would like to extend an apology for the inappropriate actions taken by one of our elementary teachers who failed to vet a class name,” district officials said in a statement. “We take this situation seriously and the issue was immediately addressed with the principal and classroom teacher. Both the principal and the teacher have apologized to the parent reporting this concern.”
Officials told the father the teacher was unaware she’d chosen a racial slur to nickname some of her students.
Ignorance can be corrected, but I have trouble buying the ignorance claim when it comes to teachers, who, generally speaking, tend to be a bit more knowledgeable than most people. Okay, I’m an old woman who has definitely heard ‘jigaboo’ and is aware of the racism inherent in that term. I don’t know how old the teacher is in this case, and I also don’t know if most younger people, say 20 to 35, are aware of it. That said, this teacher had to pull this term out of somewhere, it didn’t just magically pop into existence. Even misspelled, I expect a few moments of searching on the net would have let this teacher know it wasn’t appropriate. I can only hope against hope that this isn’t a case of a deeply bigoted teacher, who will find ways to introduce bigotry and stereotypes into young minds.
Via Raw Story.