Principal apologizes for Black History Month celebration that included O.J. Simpson, Rodman, RuPaul
Lorraine Abner’s letter did not name the individuals. But her apology came after three teachers at Wadsworth Avenue Elementary School were suspended while the Los Angeles Unified School District investigates allegations that they had their first-, second- and fourth-grade students carry pictures of O.J. Simpson, Dennis Rodman and RuPaul at last Friday’s event.
“Unfortunately, questionable decisions were made in the selection of noteworthy African American role models,” the letter said. “As the principal, I offer my apology for these errors in judgment.”
Abner could not be reached for comment Thursday.
LAUSD spokeswoman Gayle Pollard-Terry said Simpson appeared on a school-approved list of Black History Month figures, which dates back to 1985. But she said the names of Rodman and RuPaul, among others, were added in pencil when teachers were selecting which prominent African Americans their classes would honor in the parade.
Pollard-Terry said the principal did not see the amended list, which LAUSD Superintendent Ramon C. Cortines called a lack of oversight. Some civil rights activists and groups, including the Los Angeles branch of the National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People, protested Wednesday that those choices made a mockery of black history and reinforced racial stereotypes at a school that is predominantly Latino. They want the teachers, who are white, to be fired and the principal, who was not on campus last Friday, to be reprimanded....
comments powered by Disqus
Craig Michael Loftin - 3/10/2010
While I completely agree regarding OJ and Rodman, I think lumping in Rupaul is rather homophobic and disrespectful of transgender people. I think Rupaul deserves respect and praise for her success and the positive role model she provides for glbt people regardless of race. Just my opinion.
- Most Millennials Resist the ‘Millennial’ Label
- Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers – and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting
- China military parade commemorates WW2 victory over Japan
- New documentary explores the legacy of the 5,000 Rosenwald schools set up by a Sears magnate and Booker T. Washington
- Rare silent Native American movie of 1920s attracting a lot of interest
- Historian Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham wins National Humanities Medal
- AHA President Vicki L. Ruiz named National Humanities Medalist
- Historians of Color Are Revolutionizing the Narrative of ‘American Exceptionalism’
- Henry VIII voted worst monarch in history
- The Fuhrer style: Historian says press coverage of Hitler’s lavish life fueled his rise to power