The PTA at Hunter Elementary School in Raleigh, NC made efforts to confront the subject of white privilege, but it backfired as one mother highly objects the lesson.
Amber Pabon, the mother of an 8-year-old son who attends the school, was outraged after seeing the two-sided handout explaining white privilege. She feels it was an effort at encouraging white supremacy.
Pabon was so upset, she reached out to the media to voice her complaints.
“I think the message itself is inappropriate because, yes, there is racism out here, and they need to learn about it, but let the parents do that,” said Ms. Pabon to WTVD. “If she’s teaching him the way she knows, it could be completely different from the way I know. And me being part of the black community, I know different from how the white community sees it.”
Pabon said she believes the information is not age-appropriate for her child.
“He’s 8 years old. What does he need to know about racism or white privilege,” she told the station.
However, the Wake County school district spokeswoman Lisa Luten expressed that the district did not push the PTA to send the handouts to parents and explained the material is not being taught to students in school.
PTA team member Juliette Grimmett added, “We live in a world where we need to have greater empathy and understanding of people’s experiences… Because Hunter is so racially and ethnically diverse, these issues are so important for families at Hunter. We know there’s a lot of data on the impact of race on education.”
She continued, “As the dominant culture and racism being very prevalent, we can see that there’s absolutely more work white people can do.”
Pablon said she would have been less upset if she’d actually received the 11-step handout form instead of her 8-year-old son. She said parents should be more careful about the material being sent home with their children and has requested to not receive any more handouts. Documents are placed in school folders and sent home with students.
“Do you know what’s going on in your child’s school? Are you checking their folder? Are you in their school life, she asked.
Hunter Elementary is a magnet school with the enrollment of 40 percent white, 36 percent Black, 10 percent Asian and 9 percent Hispanic students.