SALT LAKE CITY — Parents from Sand Ridge Junior High in Roy, as well as members of Black Lives Matter Northern Utah want a written policy put in place for the Weber School District, clarifying the language used when a teacher or librarian is reading aloud to students.
Their request came after a video surfaced on social media showing a librarian reading aloud to students from Sand Ridge Jr. High.
The Weber School District says they’ve addressed the issue, but the families say they want more.
What happened at Sand Ridge Jr. High
The video which was made public in November 2020, reportedly shows a librarian reading aloud to students from Sand Ridge Jr. High.
She was reading from the novel Warriors Don’t Cry, and included the “N” word, spoken by one of the book’s characters, as she read aloud.
According to Jacarri Kelley, with Black Lives Matter Northern Utah, one of the students in the group raised his hand and asked the librarian if she could not use the “N” word.
“And the librarian said no,” Kelley told KSL TV reporter Ashley Moser.
“If you don’t like it, then leave my classroom,” the librarian reportedly continued.
When contacted by KSL, a representative of the Weber School District said that they’d spoken with the teacher and that she felt bad about what happened.
The teacher reportedly set up a video conference with the classroom and the novel’s author. But Kelley said that’s not enough.
“They’re feeling dismissed, and disrespected,” Kelley told KSL TV. “They’re traumatized and they don’t know how to deal with their feelings.”
Right now the district does not have a policy that covers reading aloud the “N” word in a classroom, and told KSL that usually, teachers will not read aloud words or phrases that may be considered offensive to others.
According to the district, the matter has been addressed.
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