School officials in Rochester, New Yorkinvestigate allegations that a white teacher told his class, mostly black students, to collect cotton seeds and put on handcuffs during lessons on slavery in the seventh grade of social studies.
“I’m sick of being a black person,” Jamier O’Neill, a student at the School of the Arts, told reporters.
The teacher was sent on leave. Representatives of the school did not establish the identity of the teacher. President of the Teachers’ Union Adam Urbanski told WXXI-AM that “if someone deviates from what he should do, he must suffer the consequences, but above all the proper process must be allowed.”
The allegations came after shocked parents posted on Facebook that her daughter had encountered a cotton picking lesson on Tuesday.
“He mocked slavery,” mother Dashan Tross, also known as Dear Morris, told the news.
“I have no problem with what you teach our children slavery, what our ancestors went through and how they had to harvest cotton,” she said. “Our teachers told us that day, but they don’t bring cotton and they don’t make you pick cotton seeds.”
Tross and Violma Ramos-O’Neill, Jamier’s mother, said the teacher allowed white children to opt out of the cotton collection without allowing colored children to opt out of the cotton collection.
“I immediately thought, ‘Oh, I’m not doing this,'” said Maurice Ja’Nassia Brown’s daughter. “And then he said,‘ Do it. That’s a good estimate. “
Another time the teacher brought handcuffs and handcuffs, the students said. Tros said that if her daughter refused to wear them, the teacher threatened to send her to the principal’s office or to a school counselor.
Parents are calling for the teacher to be fired and his license revoked.
School principal Kelly Nicastro in a letter told parents that school principals “are sad about these allegations”. A statement from the school board called the allegations “extremely alarming.”
“In the Black and Brown Student District, it’s important to pay close attention to the historical structure in which our students study and study,” said Council President Cynthia Elliott.