Teacher Who Compared Black Student to an Orangutan Only Gets ‘Slap on the Wrist’
Some parents in Florida are livid over their school district’s decision to issue only a verbal warning to a teacher who compared her student to an orangutan. Music teacher Lauren Orban at Rogers Garden Elementary School said the following in a conversation on Facebook with two other teachers:
“I’m fairly convinced that one of my students may be the evolutionary link between orangutans and humans,” the teacher said on the social networking site. The child to whom she was referring is not white. The comment received a few responses including one asking her to reveal to whom she was referring.
“W.W. Does that help?” she responded.
The teacher immediately deleted the thread, after another school official asked what the comment was all about–but not soon enough. The mother of the child who was the subject of the conversation learned of the thread and made a copy of the exchange.
The principal was made aware of the teacher’s comments, but only issued a verbal reprimand. The mother of the child who was compared to an orangutan criticized the Manatee County School District for not taking stronger action against the teacher.
“At minimum, the teacher should be suspended without pay,” attorney Sasha Watson said, the Bradenton Herald reported.
“We’re outraged,” Rodney Jones, a member of the Manatee County Chapter of the NAACP and father of a third-grade student at the school told the Sarasota Herald Tribune. “No student should be called something like that, especially a black student.”
The teacher has only been with the school district two years.
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