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Teacher Suspended for Hanging Black Doll

A Chicago teacher thought he was doing something helpful for his students, but his refusal to receive constructive feedback ultimately resulted in a swift suspension. According to Principal Joyce D. Kenner, the White teacher, unidentified pending an investigation, hung a black doll by its neck with the pull cord from the projector screen at the front of the class.

The White teacher told Principal Joyce D. Kenner that he thought dangling the doll in the center of his classroom would help its owner claim the item, Kenner told students and parents last week in an email.

Because of its visual similarity to lynching, the teacher’s Black colleague approached him to inform him that the doll’s hanging was potentially offensive. That initial interaction devolved into a shouting match, which one student recorded on video.

Parents were subsequently told via email that the administration had spoken with both teachers, and the teachers themselves also discussed the situation at length with their students. Meanwhile, the incident was referred to the district for a formalized discipline process.

The Chicago Teachers Union wrote in a subsequent tweet “We understand the investigation is ongoing, but practices that mitigate the harm of racial biases must also be ongoing and consistent, in our schools.”

Possible Preaching Angle:

Mature believers are those who can receive criticism and apologize for offenses, rather than stonewalling and counterattacking.

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