School Will Not Fire Teacher for Using Racial Slur

CUNNINGHAM, Tenn. (AP) -- A civil rights group has asked that a Montgomery Central High School drama teacher be fired for reportedly using a racial slur in front of black students and disciplining students based on race.

The Montgomery County School System has not released any plans to dismiss Reed Bergen, but said in a statement it "does not condone unfair treatment of any person based upon color, creed or religion." The Urban Resource Center has called for Bergen to be fired.

The incident occurred when Bergen was having a discussion in his theater class related to a student's scriptwriting project. The student asked about the use of a racially derogatory term -- known as the "N word" -- in his script. Bergen read the term aloud and said he believed the term would be considered offensive.

The school system said it will initiate systemwide cultural sensitivity training as one of its goals this year.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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  • by Mary Location: Knoxville on Oct 3, 2007 at 04:26 PM
    What in the world is a teacher there for if not to discuss these things. If the teacher CALLED a student N**** that is a problem, if they are discussing words written in a script it is called education. This is High School, these kids are almost grown, they can handle a discussion of the N word. Words are only bad when we make them bad, education is suppose to be answer to such issues. Let our teachers teach.
  • by donna Location: TN on Oct 3, 2007 at 01:26 AM
    Matt has it exactly right. The teacher wasn't calling anyone the N word. Good Gosh. It looks like someone was just searching for some reason to be offended. GROW UP!
  • by Matt Location: Texas on Oct 2, 2007 at 10:55 AM
    Obviously the student initiated the use of the "N" word so no the teacher shouldn't be fired. The student on the other hand should be given the sensitivity training and the lecture about what is and what is not appropriate in this day and age.

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