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Elementary School Teachers Who Dressed Up As Mexicans And The Border Wall Are Suspended

For Halloween this year, over a dozen teachers at Middleton Heights Elementary School in Idaho dressed up as Mexicans and the Mexico-U.S. border wall for Halloween. This was met with a lot of criticism and caused an uproar in the community.

Photos of fourteen teachers in the controversial costumes were posted to the Middleton School District’s Facebook page, and they quickly went viral after people expressed total outrage over these costumes.

During a board meeting, the Middleton School District’s superintendent Dr. Josh Middleton announced that all fourteen of the teachers dressed in these costumes were put on paid administrative leave. The school issued the following statement after making the announcement:

“This type of behavior has no place in education and certainly is not tolerated here at Middleton School District. This situation is being taken very seriously. We are in full support of our superintendent and administrative staff as a full investigation is being conducted, and are awaiting the results of the investigation,” the statement continued. “This is an unfortunate incident of very poor judgment. Yet it is not indicative of the Middleton School District or our teachers as a whole.”

The same morning as the school district’s announcement, ACLU of Idaho issued a statement which condemned the costumes:

“Regardless of the intent of a teacher’s actions in the classroom, we must focus on and give weight to the impact of such actions on the students who rely on teachers and other school officials for guidance and support throughout their educational experience,” the statement read. “School districts, their staff and other agents have obligations under federal law, state law, and district policies to prevent and protect students, staff, and others from discrimination, bullying, intimidation, and harassment.”

And the Idaho DACA Students Facebook page expressed their upset by posting that “These photos are extremely disheartening. ALL children should have the right to a learning environment that celebrates all backgrounds... This is heartbreaking. Students deserve better.”

Superintendent Middleton is taking this matter very seriously by continuing to investigate the incident. The elementary school will be offering a crisis team which will offer support for students, staff, and parents. As well, there will be heightened security and cultural sensitivity training for staff members.

There is a petition that has been signed by over 9.000 people calling for a safer and more progressive educational environment for the Middleton School District.

Source: USA Today
Photos: Middleton School Disctrict/Facebook, Heidi Heilig/Twitter, Joe Parris/Twitter, Flickr, Google Maps

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