Mason teacher admits to making lynching comment to student

Mason teacher admits to making lynching comment to student

Agee-Bell said she was not convinced that the teacher understood the gravity of her words. She acknowledged her son Nathan, 13, was talking in class at the time his teacher made the remark, Cincinnati.com reported but felt her response was totally out of line.

Mason City Schools spokeswoman Tracey Carson on Friday said the teacher told Nathan: "Your classmates are exhausted of you costing them points".

Agee-Bell said that she and representatives of the Diversity Council approached the district last month regarding the incident, but that the district only responded after the story received local media attention.

"For me, that's enough for her, as a social studies teacher especially, to be removed from the classroom", Agee-Bell said.

"I don't believe them", she said afterward.

According to the Ohio Department of Education, just 4% of the Mason school district student body is black.

Nathan did not tell his mother, Tanisha Agee-Bell, about the incident for a week in fear of getting in trouble for talking back to the teacher.

"This is a serious miss on her part", district spokeswoman Tracey Carson told USA Today.

"I was just taken aback because I said, 'what you said is actually worse than what he said you said, '" Agee-Bell said. "So she shouldn't be in the classroom".

"And I'm not saying she should never go back in the classroom, but until she can demonstrate that she understands what the impact of the language that she used and what she did can have, has had on my son, has on his peers and is having on our community, then she doesn't need to be in the classroom".

She said as soon as she heard, she emailed Thole and later spoke to the teacher on the phone, demanding she apologize to her son in front of his class.

"Growing Greatness Together is our district's vision", the district said in a statement. We have work to do. However, it does not agree that Thole's comments are enough for her to be fired.

She said: "As educators, sometimes we mess up".

The district said in a statement the teacher did not mean to offend the student, stating that it has seen an uptick in racially insensitive comments, sometimes arising from "genuine ignorance". "It was awesome (Nathan) was courageous enough to confront the teacher". For example, some students contend that they are not being offensive if they say n***a vs. the n-word. "Clearly, that was the case here", the district said.

Teens in nearby Kings, about a mile east of Mason, were banned from a youth basketball league this month for wearing jerseys with racial slurs printed on them for several weeks until a parent from an opposing team complained. The letter goes on to read, "Be advised that future instances of problems in the areas we have discussed may warrant further disciplinary action to be taken against you that may lead to termination of your employment". Officials have pledged to continue providing cultural sensitivity training.

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