A mother of two children enrolled in a Houston-area school district is fed up with the administration’s alleged negligence to put an end to racial bullying that seemingly follows the students from one grade to the next.
During an interview with The Daily Beast this week, Au Huynh, who is Asian American, explained that McGown Elementary School and the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District (CFISD) have not been proactive in preventing her sons from being bullied with anti-Asian remarks from other students. She said that she has filed three appeals for the district to issue “Stay Away” orders to keep her sons from being harassed, but she keeps getting the run-around from school officials.
“My children have been called racial slurs,” Huynh told The Daily Beast. “Each time it [has] happened, the burden has been on my children to tell their peers to stop.”
Huynh said that in January her two sons, who were 8 and 11 years old at the time, were bombarded with racist statements during a school bus ride home.
“They were called ‘Ching Chong, Wing Wong’ multiple times on their school bus ride home, the entire school bus ride home,” Huynh said.
According to Huynh, her 8-year-old son, who was in the third grade, told the students who were saying the offensive chant to stop, but they kept mocking him.
“There’s explicit video footage of this… that was shown to my husband and I,” Huynh told The Daily Beast, adding that they also had meetings with school and district officials about the incident. “In a summary that was sent out, they said that they did not find that there was racial intent with what had happened, and it wasn’t the district’s job to educate others [or] the community about racist behaviors.”
Huynh said a “more concerning issue occurred” in May, just before the end of the school year. She said her 11-year-old, who was in the fifth grade at the time, wore a shirt everyone in the class was given as memorabilia before they left the school and moved on to middle school. Students would sign one another’s shirts.
“While wearing his shirt and after having a bunch of friends and teachers sign it, [my son] decided to take off the shirt since he was getting hot,” Huynh told The Daily Beast. She explained that when her son picked up his shirt again, he noticed that a swastika had been drawn on the back.
“My son knows exactly what the swastika is and represents and was horrified by it,” Huynh said. “When my son saw the swastika, he was horrified and quickly scribbled over it because he did not want anyone thinking he drew it and supported it.”
Huynh said swastikas were drawn on other students’ belongings as well, and one student’s ball was signed with “Hitler.” Huynh said this student also called a Black student the N-word.
Huynh told administrators at McGown Elementary about what happened, but she said they never spoke to her son when they allegedly conducted an investigation. She has since filed multiple grievances with the school to demand the alleged student who drew the hate symbols to be distanced from her son in a “Stay Away” order, but she has not been successful.
“I am currently on my third grievance appeal with [Cypress-Fairbanks] in regards to implementing a stay away order to protect my son,” Huynh told The Daily Beast.
She addressed the alleged racism during a school board meeting on Nov. 13, but to no avail.
“My 8 and 11 year-old[s] should not have to repeatedly tell other children why it is wrong to use racist slurs,” she said at the meeting while championing a diversity education program within the district. “[Cypress-Fairbanks] did not adhere to the Student Code of Conduct, which requires a stay away order when hate speech incidents occur. The lack of accountability by CFISD is appalling. The district’s job is to protect all children, and it has failed miserably in that regard. My children do not feel that CFISD will keep them safe.
“Author and concentration camp survivor Elie Weisel once said, ‘We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.’”
Neither McGown Elementary School nor Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District immediately returned The Daily Beast’s request for comment in time of publication.
Post source: TDB