While we’re watching students dressing as Klansmen, the schools are being stripped of critical resources

I still don’t see the justification for anyone calling for the firing of the Lumpkin County history teacher who allowed her students to dress in Klan robes for a class dramatization of racism in America. I understand how the sight of the costumed and hooded students would upset a classmate, but once the project was explained, I would think that the concerns would be allayed.

The question here is intent. It seems clear that the teacher, who is well respected and liked, was trying to bring history to life for her students. (Several have posted on an earlier blog on this issue and defended their teacher and their class.) There are valid questions about whether she went too far in her effort to invigorate the history lesson.

Was it wrong to walk the kids through the school in their KKK attire? Yes, it was since other students had no warning and weren’t expecting to look up from their pizza in the cafeteria and see four Klansmen. But again, once the situation was explained, I am not sure how much damage was done.

With all the calamities befalling Georgia’s schools, this sideshow shouldn’t dominate the conversation.

Folks, the state just got rid of class size limits. The superintendent of schools says the funding cuts are so deep that the state is now only paying for 147 of the 180-day school year.

But we all seem fixated on an AP history class in Lumpkin County and a teacher’s decision to allow students to recreate a low point in Georgia and American history.

In the latest saga, the AJC is reporting:

The reaction from last week’s Lumpkin County High School history project was “blown way out of proportion,” said students who gathered at the school Tuesday afternoon.

“I think it’s ridiculous,” said senior Kevin Moore. “I think people are just making things up to get a little bit of attention out of it.”

Four students donned Ku Klux Klan outfits as part of a film project for teacher Catherine Ariemma’s Advanced Placement U.S. history class last week.

Ariemma escorted the group of white students through the cafeteria on the way to being filmed, not anticipating the reaction from a mixed-race student, Cody Rider, who told the AJC on Monday that he was outraged.

While most students — as well as those around town Tuesday — said the reaction was unwarranted, Ariemma on Tuesday found herself at the center of an administrative debate as well as a media circus.

The Rev. Markel Hutchins, a civil rights activist, said in a news conference after the meeting that Lumpkin County High School teachers would have sensitivity and diversity training. There have been measures put in place to make sure nothing like this happens again, he said.

There also will be a student assembly in a couple of days to discuss the situation, and a town hall meeting will be held in a couple of weeks.

Hutchins has encouraged the school system to further investigate and take disciplinary action, if warranted. Ariemma is on paid administrative leave.

“We all must learn to live together as brothers and sisters, or we will die together as fools,” Hutchins said.

Ariemma, who attended the meeting, did not speak at the news conference. Fifteen to 20 students and some parents were on hand, and several students hugged Ariemma.

“Leave her alone,” one woman said as she ushered Ariemma into a car.

The population of Lumpkin County, located about 70 miles north of Atlanta, is 94 percent white, according to Census data. Dahlonega, with a population of about 4,000, is the county seat.

Historic Dahlonega square was fairly quiet on a late Tuesday afternoon, but shop owners and visitors said they’ve been talking about last week’s incident

“People were saying it’s a big to-do about nothing,” said Kate Munson, an employee at The Humble Candle.

Gerald Eardley, visiting with his wife from Savannah, called the reaction, “political correctness gone crazy.”

100 comments Add your comment

Buzz

May 25th, 2010
10:13 pm

Klan outfits do not belong in schools. Even on stage in a play.

Nazi uniforms either.

You can teach history without being a moron.

Middle Grades Math Teacher

May 25th, 2010
10:26 pm

Amen, Maureen! All the attention focused on this is like attending to a paper cut when you’ve got an ax wound. We’ve got to focus on the incredible damage being done to public education before it’s too late.

Proud Black Man

May 25th, 2010
10:34 pm

“The population of Lumpkin County, located about 70 miles north of Atlanta, is 94 percent white, according to Census data. Dahlonega, with a population of about 4,000, is the county seat.”

No wonder the residents see nothing wrong with what the teacher did.

Hank Rearden

May 25th, 2010
10:46 pm

The left calls ‘racism’ while the right claims ‘political correctness gone crazy.’

And all the while the GOP is throwing tax cuts to the wealthy while we pay for Sonny’s road.

The only thing worse than the snake-oil salesman is the snake oil consumer. The people of a democracy get the government they deserve. Sadly, for our children, this governmental abortion of education is exactly what the ’small government’ small-minded deadbeats of this state voted for.

GA Teach

May 25th, 2010
10:54 pm

I disagree……Why should students be allowed to forget about the atrocities that were committed by the KKK. This type of controversy is good for letting people know what was praised for so many years was WRONG. The teacher was bringing history to the students making them attach a real world experience to racism. They did nothing wrong…..Movies cannot replace hands on learning… nothing can….in fact what the teacher allowed is called best practices…..How can you say the teacher was wrong…..Now your going to tell me that the black female teacher in Gwinnett was wrong….I do not think so……Hopefully, a principle in the state will see how good these two teachers are and how needed they are in our school systems……. give them a job with a pay raise…..The teacher was not wrong in walking these student threw the lunch room. The shock factor is the point…it gets your attention… and that is what creates an ideal teaching environment…….Everyone get a clue…..she was not being racist……When we limit learning we limit the students world……Hmmm…..I show a nazi flag in my classroom that came off a building that was taken down by one of my students grandfather…..It has the bullet holes and everything…..The students love seeing it and it gets their attention….It help bring the war to the students……Wearing the KKK uniforms allows students to feel what so many minorities in America felt…I stirs feelings that some student have never felt….the uniforms are intimidating in our society…..Stop making a big issue over this because the teacher was doing what is in her power to do. She was teaching……

Middle Grades Math Teacher

May 25th, 2010
10:54 pm

“Nero fiddled while Rome burned” comes to mind.

DCSS Teacher

May 25th, 2010
10:56 pm

There is no excuse for exposing vulnerable students to frightening images like these. No more should students dress up like Nazis and goosestep their way past the Jewish kids in the cafeteria. There are simply some images whose power to terrify transcends any educational value to putting on a costume–and what is the desired educational message, anyway? If the teacher felt this is a valuable lesson for her students, then perhaps she should consider taking the act to an all-African-American school, and educating them about the KKK, as well. I would imagine that they would not be too eager to learn the lesson–whatever it is.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Zimteachnet, Maureen Downey. Maureen Downey said: While we’re watching students dressing as Klansmen, the schools are being stripped of critical resources http://bit.ly/cAyWAP [...]

Ed Johnson

May 25th, 2010
11:05 pm

Proud Black Man, I see you. Know that you are loved.

TACITUS

May 25th, 2010
11:05 pm

It was done to educate, in a strictly historical context. Meanwhile, the usual race hustlers are coming out of the woodworks and calling for sensitivity training and discussions of race. Get over it people ! Not all history is noble. Learn from it, and move forward, instead of hiding from it and rewriting it to fit your personal, narrow agenda.

Parent

May 25th, 2010
11:10 pm

I wonder how many young people today even know about the Klan, its history and their robes?

Kudos to the teacher in Dahlonega for doing her job – educating !

td

May 25th, 2010
11:12 pm

GA Teach, we do not agree on a great deal of the issues on this forum but a I agree 100% with your statement and analysis of this situation. We have to teach not only the good but the bad in our history. We can not leave out the parts we do not like. Remember the old saying that if you do not learn from your history then you will repeat it.

HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER

May 25th, 2010
11:19 pm

This was done to educate!? Nonsense. Is raping someone in the classroom and then trying to justify it by saying, “this is what not to do”. Why not burn the Jews also for the sake of teaching history? Very stupid teacher and supporters. We can read through the lines—you know you wear robes too.

Striving for excellence

May 25th, 2010
11:21 pm

I’m just glad someone with the impeccable credentials of Rev. Markel Hutchins can lend his level of experience, leadership, and most of all, gravitas to the situation.

Cap

May 25th, 2010
11:27 pm

Speaking of dwindling resources, where did this teacher even get four KKK robes? Some schools can’t afford jerseys for a starting five on a basketball team! Did she use school funds to purchase KKK robes? Did she use her own money? Are these KKK robes from her own personal stash? Does Lumpkin County High regularly put on theatrical productions about the Klan so they just happen to have KKK robes laying around? In fact, if the KKK is so “historical” rather than contemporary, where does one even go to purchase a Klan robe in 2010? Personally I wouldn’t no where to begin but Klan garb is seemingly easy to come by in Lumpkin County. I think this is where the problem might lie.

Interesting

May 25th, 2010
11:29 pm

Just Who does The Rev. Markel Hutchins think he is? He is trying to get the media off his back for his scandalous ways. He has to be the most racist person I have known. Lord Help Him!

mom123

May 25th, 2010
11:30 pm

If history only focused on its ‘pleasant’ aspects, there wouldn’t be much left to teach. The PC wingnuts (Left or Right) would rather omit history than teach it. I seem to recall a certain Iranian nutjob that recently drew heat for his continued denial about the single most well-documented event in recent history.

Joey M

May 25th, 2010
11:38 pm

There are school curriculum courses on the Black Panther. We have a college professor named Kamau Kambon that called for the death of ALL white people. Apparently the AJC found this acceptable because it was never reported on. In LA we have a teacher named Ron Gochez calling for an uprising in Arizona because of the enforcement of current immigration laws. In Oklahoma, Roberta Hill was shot and killed in her driveway after a black person in a car told her she was in the wrong neighborhood and all whites should leave. The crime didn’t go past local news. We even have the infamous but hardly reported story about Kimberly Goodwine. She is the black woman that screamed obscenities at a pregnant white woman because the white woman was trying to sit in the seat designated on her ticket. Goodwine was approached by an Air Marshal. She proceeded to bite him and draw blood when the air marshal took her into custody. This story was barely reported on by the AJC and no mention of Goodwine’s race was mentioned even though Goodwine used racial epitaphs towards the pregnant woman. White people have conditioned themselves to feel full of shame for slavery that nobody alive partook in. White people have conditioned themselves that even describing a Crayon as “black” is offensive. This is wrong.

A second teacher!!!!

May 25th, 2010
11:40 pm

but this woman is african american!

Gwinnett Teacher Allows KKK Reenactment
Another Metro teacher involved in controversy

Updated: Tuesday, 25 May 2010, 10:45 PM EDT
Published : Tuesday, 25 May 2010, 10:36 PM EDT

* Denise Dillon

Denise
Dillon

By: DENISE DILLON | MyFOXATLANTA

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. – Another teacher Metro Atlanta teacher has been involved in a KKK reenactment controversy. This time the incident happened at a Gwinnett County middle school.

Sweetwater Middle School teacher Stephanie Hunt was told to report to Human Resources after school officials said she allowed students to dress up like KKK members.

School officials said Hunt told her eighth grade class to choose a period in history and act it out for a class project.

The students were in the hallway wearing the KKK robes, when another teacher saw them and reported it.

School officials said they are investigating the incident and have not determined what, if any, disciplinary actions will be taken against Hunt.

Ludo

May 25th, 2010
11:40 pm

she wasn’t fired, you moron. she was sent on administrative leave with pay. the principal has stated he doesn’t want her fired.

Tom

May 25th, 2010
11:47 pm

PROUD BLACK MAN from Atlanta, you are a bigot and racist in the worst way possible. Worry about your Atlanta and not Lumpkin County in North Georgia. Tell me why everytime I turn on the tv I see black men suspected in committing murders, robberies, burglaries, thefts and every other crime imaginable 95% of the time in Atlanta? The Black Panthers were just as bad as the Klan years ago. You need to focus on helping your own race better themselves and not some issue that is none of your business. You disguist me which is exactly your plan!!

Just a Thought

May 25th, 2010
11:55 pm

Maureen,

I hear what you are saying. I also understand both sides of the incident. However, let’s be honest. This is Atlanta. Covering a story such as this is like feeding meat to piranhas.

I in no way think Ms. Ariemma should be fired. I know what it is like to be accused of something that you are innocent of so I do sympathize with her on that point. However, I also think the attention this story is getting serves to show how divided the South still is. There is a desperate need to have an open, honest and productive discussion about race relations in the New South. Will the AJC help facilitate this discussion? Or will they simply put the bait out there and watch the blood flow?

When I first started teaching, many of my students wore Confederate/Rebel paraphernalia to school. I took no offense to this whatsoever. I had a great relationship with these students and they helped me understand more about Rebel/Redneck culture. I hope I helped them understand more about African-American culture.

But….if these same students had decided to dress as Klansmen for a class project (or my African American students for that matter), I would have absolutely not allowed it. I understand the sensitivity that still exists around the Klan for reasons mentioned a hundred times already.

hmmm

May 25th, 2010
11:56 pm

So what would you do if you were sitting down eating and 4 klansmen in full garb just walked through the dining area?

This is Mrs. Norman Maine

May 26th, 2010
12:04 am

Who called for her firing?

Lee

May 26th, 2010
12:05 am

Lumpkin Co with it’s 94% white population nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains is not immune to the tentacles of political correctness gone awry. Just goes to show how far this pathology has spread.

Now the county will have to spend taxpayer money for “sensitivity and diversity training.” ::::gag::::

The good news is that this teacher got some paid time off and didn’t have to put up with the mixed race troublemaker during this time. Maybe she can take the time off to put together her next history lesson – “How far this country has gone to Hell in the past 50 years.”

G-man

May 26th, 2010
12:06 am

She should be fired. She and the other ignorant people of the county JUST DON’T GET IT. KKK IS A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION. They killed and hated people of color. You don’t have to teach history by exposing children reinacting through drama people who oppressed, lynched,tortured,killed people for sport. This is tantamount to visual terrorism. Would she have children prancing around the school in SS NAZI Uniforms to teach about the Holocaust…NO!
I wonder what would have happened if the teacher was a Muslim and she had children dressed up as Muslim terrorist with kill Americans on their clothes to teach about the Iraq War. That Lumpkin County community would not be as dismissive of the complaints from black people.

Just a Thought

May 26th, 2010
12:07 am

@ Mrs. Norman Main
I was responding to several comments written on the original blog post. Some people feel she should be fired. Poor judgment, probably…but should she lose her job? Absolutely not.

Just a Thought

May 26th, 2010
12:08 am

*Maine* my apologies.

Wendy

May 26th, 2010
12:23 am

This was completely unacceptable behavior from a teacher…period. She mentioned in one of her interviews that she wanted to make the “klan stroll” a “teachable moment”. Therefore, one begs to ask….teach what? How to be insensitive and demeaning to the students in the klan outfits and how to be embarrased, frightened and intimidated by the ones in the cafeteria. It is always incredibly amazing how the most outrageous behavior can always be explained or excused when the “victims” are insignificant. If the teacher truly wanted a “teachable moment” she should have been held to the same professional standards as any other teacher and adhered to a state approved lesson plan or rubrick. This was clearly more closely related to her own personal agenda and she felt confident (as the majority of your comments would indicate) that she would be able to get by with it – with accolades and flying colors. So sad.

DB

May 26th, 2010
12:46 am

@Cap:

Good lord, they probably just used some old white sheets. I’m pretty sure it’s not the kind of costume you can pick up at Party City.

naidamu

May 26th, 2010
1:02 am

Dear Ms. Ariemma:
Since this you like to make history real, here are some more project suggestions I think might come in handy:
1. Chain your students, neck & ankles, atht will teach your students the evils of slavery, whites can role play slave owners and of course “you know who” must play slaves
2. Inquistion history, tie and bind your students (must be Jewish or WASP) on stakes – can buy them at the local KKK store in the county
3. Civil Rights history- rent dogs and set them on your students so they can feel the terror that existed then. Biggest white student can play Bull Connor. Feel free to water hose them for full effect.
4. War in Iraq – waterboard the students so they can know what terrorists must have felt like, and why it was necessary
5. Holocaust? Ms. Areimma that is too easy – use your imagination – I am sure you can come up with a way to “fry” the students or gas them, how else would they learn?

Just think of what else you can do – Vietnam? POWs?

Please no accolades – I am glad to contribute to the learning of your students

naidamu
Feel free to contribute more ideas to Ms. Ariemma, I would hate to see her run out of ideas.

Former student of Ariemma's

May 26th, 2010
1:04 am

“Speaking of dwindling resources, where did this teacher even get four KKK robes? Some schools can’t afford jerseys for a starting five on a basketball team! Did she use school funds to purchase KKK robes? Did she use her own money? Are these KKK robes from her own personal stash? Does Lumpkin County High regularly put on theatrical productions about the Klan so they just happen to have KKK robes laying around? In fact, if the KKK is so “historical” rather than contemporary, where does one even go to purchase a Klan robe in 2010? Personally I wouldn’t no where to begin but Klan garb is seemingly easy to come by in Lumpkin County. I think this is where the problem might lie.”

Actually, the costume was a white sheet with holes cut out of it for the eyes, and the cone was formed with a Spongebob Squarepants Birthday Party Hat. Total cost: ~$5

Why

May 26th, 2010
1:09 am

EVERYONE IS ENTITLED TO THEIR OWN OPINIONS. WE HAVE FREE WILL. WE ALL HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE SELFISH, INSENSITIVE, AND IGNORANT TO MATTERS THAT HAPPENED WITHIN THE LAST 25-30 YEARS. THE ISSUE IS NOT ABOUT BLACK OR WHITE, EDUCATION FUNDING OR LACK OF PROPER PRIORITY IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS. THE ISSUE IS INSENSITIVITY AND COMMON DECENCY AND COURTESY. IF THESE REAL ISSUES HAD BEEN IN PLAY THIS MESS WOULD HAVE NEVER OCCURRED. THINK ABOUT THAT, HAD THIS SO CALLED TEACHER OF THE YEAR USED HER BRAIN AND SHOWED SOME SENSITIVITY, AND LOVE; THIS ARTICLE WOULD HAVE NEVER BEEN WRITTEN. BUT AS LONG AS WE MINIMIZE AND MAKE SMALL OTHER PEOPLES FEELINGS AND TRY TO PUT IT UNDER THE GUISE OF LIBERAL OR CONSERVATIVE WE WILL CONTINUE TO HAVE THESE INFLAMMATORY PROBLEMS. TO BE HONEST, I DONT THINK THE LADY MEANT ANY HARM; I THINK SHE WAS JUST BEING LAZY AND INSENSITIVE. INSTEAD OF HAVING THE KIDS TO SIMPLY WAIT AND PUT THE ROBES ON ONCE THEY GOT THO THE FILMING DESTINATION. IF SHE WAS BEING SENSITIVE TO HER FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS AND SHOWED LOVE SHE WOULD HAVE WAITED. THIS IS WHY THERE IS A CALL FOR SENSITIVITY TRAINING BECAUSE SHE IS IGNORANT TO THE FEELINGS OF HER FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS, AND WHO CAN BLAME HER OR ANYBODY ELSE WHEN THE TEACHING ON THESE TYPE OF MATTERS ARE TOTALLY INADEQUATE; NOT TO MENTION THE ENVIRONMENT SE IS IN. USE YOUR HEAD NEXT TIME. UNTIL THEN TAKE SOME TIME OFF AND EDUCATE YOURSELF AND STOP BLAMING EVERYBODY ELSE FOR YOUR PROBLEM AND THE ATTENTION YOU ARE GETTING. MANY PEOPLE HAVE PERISHED FOR A LACK OF KNOWLEDGE SO AGAIN GO EDUCATE YOURSELF SO THIS DOES NOT HAPPEN AGAIN.

GA Teach

May 26th, 2010
1:31 am

History will repeat itself if we do not use active learning……..Rome took hundreds of years to become great power…It took days to fall…..Why? Education was put to the side and Western Europe fell into a dark age for 800 years…..Most of your have never stepped in a classroom and taught children……It was not about racism….I watched her interview earlier……This teacher only wanted the students to make a real connection….a life connection….If we ignore our past we will never get past this problem…..The N-word comes to mind..I taught in a school where 70% of the student population used the N-word every other second…..Why? It is a way to eliminate the evil meaning behind the word….By the way in documentaries they do act out burning, gassing, beatings, hangings, etc…Are we going to ask the movie industry not to do this? No….We welcome their gift at delivering a story that impacts peoples lives…..Students must be allowed to use their creative ability…..It is up to the teacher to explain the importance of the enactment, The teacher has done nothing wrong.

GA Teach

May 26th, 2010
1:46 am

Rubrics and Standards are broad and they do not have to be state approved…..Plus they are called performance standards…..That does not mean taking a test….It means students should be able to present the information learned in other ways…..She taught her curriculum….Plus it was AP she is not bound to the same standards that are in the GPS, because they are required to teach well beyond the state standards in US History….AP Standards are different.

Hey lets go back to using the label African American….Wait! I only one or two students actually from Africa so I use the word black…..If we are scared to discuss it the problem will come back to haunt us…..The Civil War happened because the American politicians ignored the problem until it was to late….We have to learn that teachers are not trying to harm others…Yeah there are a few bad apples, but we should worry about the teacher that commits indecent acts with a child not the one doing her job. This is the problem with education…

iwillnotsubmit

May 26th, 2010
2:40 am

“The superintendent of schools says the funding cuts are so deep that the state is now only paying for 147 of the 180-day school year.”

Very simple solution to this. Start charging tuition for all students.

Teaching in FL is worse

May 26th, 2010
5:28 am

Lest people forget, the KKK is against more than just black people. They terrorized Jews and Catholics as well. WHy haven;t they come forward to be part of this spectacle too?

As a former Yankee Catholic, I think this is just what many have called it-a sideshow. Where were all of these community activists and town hall meetings when the class sizes were being jacked up?

wade

May 26th, 2010
5:35 am

First, I totally agree with “Joey M”, you hit the nail on the head. I grew and graduated from Lumpkin County and I cant believe that a college educated individual would be stupid enough yo even attempt this. Knowing how over sensitive certain people are who are just looking for a chance to be on t.v. or get their names in the paper. Im refering to this idiot Preacher from Atlanta who is leading the charge.

Bottom line, this teacher is a complete idiot and the black preacher whats his name is an idiot as well. This teacher is one of those individuals who has moved in to this small town and its morons like her that has taken this small town over.
To the black preacher in Atlanta, would you stand up for a white persons rights when some african american were to use the word “honkey”, or other racist remarks coming from an african american, or would you just laugh and use the word “honkey” yourself?

where were thet?

May 26th, 2010
6:18 am

@ Teaching in FL is worse, Apparently they were changing locks on their office doors…

high school teacher

May 26th, 2010
7:03 am

I just saw a clip on the news about this story. All teachers are required to attend sensitivity and diversity training. Isn’t that like punishing the entire class for the actions of one student?

Economicwoes

May 26th, 2010
7:10 am

The last time the clan marched in Gwinnettett was 1988. THe last time (to my knowledge) that T. Kimbrell, tech. dept., fired an employee based upon his black race was 2000. The same year the school system was fined for crippling another white female employee. This employee boss used to subject the female staff to his ridiculing black women. It is still very real. This teacher, like employee’s in the Gwinnett schools tech. dep., close their eyes and ears. Nothing happened to the employees in Gwinnett, mainly because their parents attended school with Alvin. Can you use this to justify keeping this teacher, yes.

catlady

May 26th, 2010
7:54 am

The source of the angst isn’t from the black students. The Klan still meets regularly in North Georgia. The powers that be don’t like to be made fun of! They don’t want students to see them as objects of derision! Get wise, folks!

Teaching in FL is worse

May 26th, 2010
8:22 am

Sensitivity and diversity training, huh? Seems to me that if you are a hater, some touchy-feely class won’t change your mind. Waste of time.

Maybe they’ll hold it on a furlough day…..

V for Vendetta

May 26th, 2010
8:27 am

First off, anyone mentioning that the Black Panthers are equivalent to the KKK is a utter waste of space. The KKK’s crimes far outweigh those of the Black Panthers–though both groups are not exactly role models to be emulated.

Secondly, let’s focus on this quote for just a second because I think this encompasses a lot of what is wrong with America right now:

“The Rev. Markel Hutchins, a civil rights activist, said in a news conference after the meeting that Lumpkin County High School teachers would have sensitivity and diversity training.”

In case you are a little rusty on individual rights, the leader of one “group” of people–a group defined arbitrarily by nothing more than the color of their skin–is calling for the sanctioning and punishment of another group, also primarily based on the color of their skin. (One wonders if any black teachers, assuming there are any, at the high school would have to attend the training.)

Racism is the lowest form of collectivism. It allows people to attempt to define others based on a completely arbitrary system that has nothing to do with values or potential. It has existed since humans began walking upright and encountering each other in social situations. (There is even some evidence to suggest that Cro-Magnon man might have actively participated in the extinction of Neanderthal man.)

The fact that there are places where the Klan still meets, where people still believe in the Nazi party, and where people think all infidels should die, is not a reason to whitewash History class (pun intended) and put a cap on creativity. I had an interesting History professor in college who showed us some very graphic videos of the Holocaust, another one who showed us a powerful slideshow on lynching. I can still remember the images; they’re etched into my brain.

This teacher, a highly praised one at that, was attempting to make History class a reality. Though she could have communicated it better, I think no punishment is warranted–especially not some kind of asinine “training” handed out at the command of a group that defines itself based on nothing more than race.

As Maureen said, we have bigger fish to fry.

Over It

May 26th, 2010
9:17 am

It wasn’t just the town that thinks this whole parade is over the top, it is the entire state and country. Maureen is right. She has an excellent record and is apparently a great teacher (as shown by her parents and students willingness to defend her)…she won’t allow her students to do that again. She probably won’t use any type of innovative teaching method ever again (thanks PC idiots) and will stand at the front of her class and lecture for the rest of her life. Leave the woman alone and get out of Dahlonega. They don’t need “sensitivity” training. Our country is so out of hand it is a joke. Allowing students to create a project to show racism does not make the entire town a cesspool of hatred. LET IT GO>

Proud Black Man

May 26th, 2010
9:31 am

I would hate to see how this “exemplary” teacher teaches about the current war against terror. Does she conduct mock water boarding sessions? How about the Holocaust? Fake gassings along with a crematorium? The silence of you bigots when presented with this paradigm is deafening.

Concerned

May 26th, 2010
9:35 am

This teacher has been known to be a racist treating African- American students without the same fairness as the white students. It has been her practice all of her five year rein at LCHS. This incident outraged more than just a student but also a community of African- Americans and other concerned citizen of this state. This is not just a teachers bad dicision, it is much more.
If a Black teacher reinacted the time in history when Jews were percecuted by Germans and student wore Swat Stichas and SS uniforms would this be ok too! I think not.

clueless

May 26th, 2010
9:37 am

Bread & circuses….

Over It

May 26th, 2010
9:39 am

Notice the students were wearing robes….not lynching. Now if the video was of students in robes “lynching” I could see how PBM’s analogy would apply. However, since they were simply wearing robes (not perpetrating horrific acts)…an analogy would only make sense if you said, “how would you feel if the students were wearing Nazi uniforms or Al-Qaeda garments???” See the difference?

Concerned

May 26th, 2010
9:48 am

So how would America feel if the students were wearing Nazi uniforms? It too would not be applauded as good way of teaching history.