According to FOX NEWS, several Wisconsin teachers have been suspended after having middle-schoolers determine punishments for slaves for an assignment given at the start o fBlack History Month. The school eventually apologized to backlash from parents over the controversial coursework.
"First day of Black History Month and this was issued to my 6th grader at Patrick Marsh Middle School!!!" read a Facebook post by Dazarrea Ervins, who alerted the Sun Prairie Area School District of the issue.
The history lesson asked sixth-graders at Patrick Marsh Middle School how they’d penalize a slave who had "disrespected his master" by telling him, ‘You are not my master.'" It aimed to illustrate the politics of ancient Mesopotamia by having the students apply an ancient law called Hammurabi’s Code to various situations, NBC 15 reported. The schoolwork said such a disobedient servant would be executed.
Parents were not pleased with the assignment.
"I couldn’t believe what I was reading," said Ervins. The "shocked" mother explained that her son Zayvion brought her the assignment with a "weird look on his face that I’ve never seen before."
"I can see how they’re learning about this era, but the wording of the question and the statement — it was just wrong," she said.
Ervins’ son seconded his mom’s sentiment, writing: "It made me think of how they would treat me if I was in-person, in class. What would they think of me, and would they treat me like I was an outsider and make me feel scared and unsafe?"
It wasn’t just parents and students who were angered by the assignment.
"I didn’t believe it was real, to be honest with you," Michael Johnson, president and CEO of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Dane County, which includes Sun Prairie, told Channel 3000. He added that "given all the training I’ve been told teachers have gone through, I think this was bad judgment.
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