In a recent article, several civil rights organizations have filed a complaint against the Boston Public Schools regarding incidents that involved #BlackatBLS campaigners at the Boston Latin School. The investigation could fuel an inquiry of the entire school district. Boston Public Schools must repair the perception of racism in school by utilizing the Raccelerate Racism System and promoting positive racial teacher student classroom relationships.

According to the article, Civil rights group files complaint against Boston Latin School, the Boston branch of the NAACP, the America Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts and other civil rights groups have banned together and filed a five page complaint requesting an investigation at the Boston Latin School. The civil rights complaint states that parents of Boston Latin School students and alums are concerned over what they perceive to be disproportionate and severe levels of discipline for Black students compared to their non-black peers for similar offenses. The complaint also alleges that a teacher greeted a black student using a racial slur, and says that the event was not investigated.

Boston Public Schools had previously conducted their own internal audit and concluded that Boston Latin School administrators did not violate any policies or procedures. The Office of Equity agreed that the racial remarks were made by persons who lived outside of Massachusetts and did not attend their school. They also indicated that the

administrators acted appropriately regarding four Boston Latin School students who made racial remarks with the exception of one incident. This November 2015 incident involved a non-Black student using a racial slur towards a Black female student. The Office of Equity went as far as recommending that the Boston Latin School headmaster Lynne Mooney Teta conduct a racial climate audit before the end of the school year and repeat the process in the next school year.

Since the audit conducted by time the Boston Public School Office of Equity, Boston Latin School headmaster Teta has apologized for her slow response and has vowed to remain on the job and work with student and teachers to improve the school’s racial culture.

The civil rights organizations have citied an incident that the Boston Public School Office of Equity has overlooked in their investigation. This incident involved a 45-day suspension of a Black male student for allegedly sending sexually explicit messages. There were rumors that the Boston Latin School administration desired to prevent the student from returning to school.

According to the complaints, one of the primary accusations is how the Boston Latin School administrators respond to Black male students. This treatment is consistent with the Raccelerate Phenomenon. Educators, police, and many others in the United States are programmed to overreact when Blacks are involved in incidents that they deem in need of discipline. This behavior is a major contributor to such institutionalized racism such as the school-to-prison pipeline. The first step that the Boston Public Schools must implement to minimize this behavior is to utilize the Raccelerate Racism System. This system will keep teachers under the racism radar which is also an new re requirement for the Every Student Succeeds Act. This is also what the Office of Civil rights will exam in its investigation.

The Office of Civil Rights will also investigate the perception that parents and students have regarding the staff members at the Boston Latin School. They will conduct interviews in order to collect the necessary data. If it is found that Boston Public Schools facilitate cultures of racism then they will make reconditions regarding additional policy and procedures. And if it is really bad then they may insist that the Boston Public school district pay for a monitor to ensure that there are no additional events that contribute to racism at the schools.

Rather than loosing additional monies and enduring the embarrassment that is going to continue, Boston Public Schools should opt to promote positive racial teacher student classroom relationships.

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Dr. Derrick L. Campbell, Ed.D.

www.positiveracialrelationships.com

PO Box 4707 Cherry Hill, NJ 08034

 

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Author of Promoting Positive Racial Teacher Student Classroom Relationships and Promoting Positive Racial Teacher Student Classroom Relationships: Methodology

 

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