A Virginia High School teacher is under fire for asking the only Black student in her English class to read a Langston Hughes poem “blacker.”
9th grader Jordan Shumate had begun reading Langston Hughes’ poem “Ballad of the Landlord” when his teacher interrupted him, exclaiming, “Blacker, Jordan – c’mon, blacker. I thought you were black.”
When Shumate refused to continue reading, the teacher proceeded to read it herself, “like a slave.”
Shumate was then reprimanded for taking issue with his teacher’s actions.
“‘It’s very, very unprofessional,‘ Shumate told WJLA-TV. ‘It should not happen. She didn’t do it to any other kids. Why did she have to do it to me?’
The student brought the issue to his mother’s attention after the teacher reportedly singled him out again during a lesson about stereotypes. Shumate said Bart asked him to explain why blacks like grape soda and rap music.
Shumate’s mother, Nicole Page, told WAMU that she is ‘very sad’ for her ‘child’s loss of innocence’ through the experience. The teacher had also previously asked the student to rap out a poem by black rapper and actor Tupac Shakur, Page said.”
The teacher is currently under investigation for her actions.
Have you ever been singled out in this way?
What kind of punishment should Jordan Shumate’s teacher receive for her actions?
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