AMERICAN FORK, Utah (ABC4 News) – A Utah County elementary school is at the center of a controversy after a student’s mother posted on social media, upset about a potentially racially insensitive game her daughter’s classmates played.
The mother, who is choosing to remain anonymous at this time, wrote a Facebook post about the situation:
Now, the mother says her 5th-grade daughter spoke out, not wanting to play.
“The teacher told her she could either read a book or play the game. So, she chose to read a book,” the mother told ABC4 News. “But she was very uncomfortable, and she wanted to leave, but she didn’t feel like she could. So, she read the book instead and picked a book on Harriot Tubman.”
After learning of this, the mother says she was surprised and frustrated that a teacher at Legacy Elementary School would be OK with playing such a game.
“Obviously, it’s important that kids learn about the slave trade, and how slaves were transported, and the terrible conditions that they were put under, but this felt like the wrong way to teach that,” the mother said.
While this situation is disappointing for this Utah County family, the mother said she hopes this can be a learning experience for all involved.
“My hope is education,” the mother said. “Education for the teachers, on understanding why this kind of activity was insensitive and inappropriate and also something that would be for the students.”
The family is working with Black Lives Matter Utah and founder Lex Scott said people need to understand the severity of racial insensitivity.
“But what we need the teachers to understand is that you don’t have to be racist to do something racially insensitive and cause racial trauma for a child,” Scott said.
The mother told ABC4 News Thursday evening she and her daughter have spoken to the principal and teacher after the mother’s initial report to the school Thursday morning and said they [the school] are responding to the situation and are working toward a resolution.
ABC4 News reached out to Alpine School District and the district spokesperson said the school and family are working together toward a resolution and the district is investigating the situation.
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