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South Carolina fifth-graders asked to justify KKK in school assignment

According to the school district, the assignment was part of a lesson plan about the Reconstruction Period
Photo Illustration: Metro

A South Carolina teacher has been suspended after giving her students a KKK question on an assignment. They were asked to imagine themselves as a member of the Klu Klux Klan and to justify the treatment of African-Americans.

Students at the Oak Pointe Elementary School were given an assignment containing the following question:

“You are a member of the K.K.K.,” the fifth-grade homework assignment read. “Why do you think your treatment of African-Americans is justified?”

The questions on the worksheet were part of a lesson plan about the Reconstruction Period and discriminatory groups. However, a concerned and upset family member of one of the students at the school shared a photo of the work sheet to Facebook.

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“This is my little 10-year-old nephew’s homework assignment today,” he wrote. “He’s home crying right now,” said Tremain Cooper, the student’s uncle.

“How can she ask a 5th-grader to justify the actions of the KKK?,” he added.

KKK question on 5th grade assignment

According to the Facebook post by Cooper, the teacher has been identified as Kerri Roberts of Oak Pointe Elementary School in Columbia, South Carolina.

The assignment posted to Facebook shows a box with the question. The questions in the assignment start with “You are here…” and the student is asked to justify the actions of the Klu Klux Klan. 

Below the KKK question, there is a question that reads: “You are a freedman. Are you satisfied with your new life? Why or why not?"

For both questions, students are asked to give their own response.

The teacher was suspended after family members contacted the school and sent images of the assignment to news outlets.

According to local CBS affiliate News 19, the school district issued a statement regarding the assignment.

"School District Five is taking this matter very seriously. We took immediate action to investigate once the concerns over the assignment were brought to our attention, and the teacher has been placed on administrative leave as part of our standard personnel investigation procedures. We have been in communication and will continue to be in communication with families to let them know our actions and next steps."

The school assignment created a lot of buzz because of the recent political climate.

"We understand the seriousness of this matter particularly in light of the events taking place in our country at this time. We want to ensure that our students, parents, staff and community know that we are giving this matter our full attention," the school district added.

 
 
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