After a Houston teacher sparked national outrage by giving a student a mock award at the end of the school year naming her “most likely to become a terrorist,” others have come forward to claim they received insensitive “awards.”
Initial reports of the award given to Lizeth Villanueva made headlines with the Associated Press, BuzzFeed News, USA Today and the Dallas Morning News on Thursday and Friday, as commenters blasted the teacher’s “poor attempt to poke fun,” as the school district characterized it. At the time, the school said the teacher would be disciplined but declined to say how.
Not long after, Sydney Caesar told Fox 26 that she had also received an award from the same teacher naming her “most likely to blend in with white people.” She provided the station with images of the certificate.
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Caesar is black, as is the teacher, according to CNN. Earlier in the year, the teacher also gave Caesar a ‘black quiz’ to prove how black she was, according to the girl’s sister, Lauren Easton.
Easton told CNN and Villanueva told KPRC that another child received an award deeming him “most likely to be homeless in Guatemala.” Villanueva also claimed another child, whom she characterized as “very emotional,” was named “Most likely to cry about every little thing.”
“My initial reaction was shock,” Easton told CNN. “I couldn't believe a teacher could be that bold.”
“For that child to either be called a terrorist or she's not black enough, basically now the students are taking that and that's her label for the rest of the school year”, Caesar’s mother, Latonya Robinson, told Fox 26.
In a statement, the school district and college prep program the class was a part of condemned the teacher’s actions and said it did not represent their values.