A first-grade teacher at a public charter school in Central Florida segregated kids by eye color and then purposefully treated some of them cruelly in order to teach them a “tough lesson” about segregation and racism. The kids responded by crying because of the nastiness of the taxpayer-funded teacher.
The “tough lesson” occurred last week — coincident with Martin Luther King, Jr. Day — at Minneola Elementary Charter School in Minneola, Fla., a suburb of Orlando, reports local NBC affiliate WESH-TV.
The unidentified teacher separated students — aged 7 and 8 — by eye color, then smugly proceeded to show favoritism to the kids with blue eyes for several hours. Blue-eyed kids got candy. They got toys. They got hugs. Kids with eyes of other colors received nothing.
“She only wanted the white people that had blue eyes to get hugs,” Aniyah Rodriguez, an eight-year-old girl who suffered through the teacher’s bizarre lesson, told WESH-TV. “And she said she didn’t want any of our cooties.”
The little girl added that “everybody in the class was crying.”
The teacher did not alert parents prior to the discriminatory treatment. She sent a letter home the day after the lesson.
Minneola Elementary Charter’s principal, Sherry Watts, did not authorize the teacher’s segregation or purposefully awful treatment.
Many parents are upset by the treatment of their children.
“It’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard that a teacher did to teach a child something,” parent Lychelle Bland told the NBC station.
“They’re too young to even comprehend what’s actually going on,” Bland added. “You shouldn’t make a child upset to teach them a lesson like that.”
Other parents said they totally have no problem with a teacher treating innocent, uncomprehending little kids unkindly and viciously for several hours because of their external traits if it’s in the service of some lesson.
“I don’t personally see anything wrong with that because I think it needs to be learned,” parent Melissa Allred told Orlando ABC affiliate WFTV.
Watts, the principal, described the lesson as “not an appropriate lesson for first grade.”
“I can tell you this will not happen again,” she told WESH-TV.
It’s not clear how the teacher will be punished, or if she will be punished at all.