Tennessee High School Teacher Suspended After Using The N-Word Toward Students

Tennessee High School Teacher Suspended After Using The N-Word Toward Students

Another high school teacher is suspended for using racial slurs repeatedly.

ABC 6 reports an online video showing the teacher and a student discussing whether or not it is OK to use the “n-word. The chemistry teacher from South-Doyle High School can be heard using the racial slur while talking with the students. Shortly after, students began pleading with the teacher to stop using the word, which he initially claimed as “derogatory” and “terrible,” but admitted he used it because the student used it toward him.

“I got Black in me; what do you got in you?” the student said. “You over there saying ‘n****,’ you are fully white.” When students told him he should never use the word because it was racist, he responded, “I don’t care. I can say a word in the English language.”

One student claims the exchange started after the teacher singled out the student for being loud in class, then used the word when the student asked why he was being called out. “The whole thing made me feel like our teacher doesn’t care about us,” Malayia Pelcher told Knox News. “Why would you say that to us as a class when we didn’t do anything to you?”

Hero Lawson, another student, recorded the video. Her mother called the incident unacceptable and inappropriate. “These are our children, you know, from the time they’re in kindergarten to the time they graduate high school. We entrust complete strangers to help our children become the best they can be,” she said. “We’re all pieces to a puzzle. You know, we’re all different.”

The employee has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation, according to Knox County Schools, saying the behavior is unacceptable. “KCS does not tolerate any instances of racism.” The Tennessee Department of Education says South-Doyle hosts 26% of their students of color out of more than 1,000 students. While the teacher is still suspended, KCS spokeswoman Carly Harrington told Knox News the teacher’s status could change as the investigation proceeds.