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‘Sit Your Nappy Headed Self Down,” Teacher Tells Student, 13

A mother complained about a racial inference made to her 13-year-old daughter by her teacher and the child ended up kicked out of school with three weeks left in the semester.

In Science class at Inglewood’s Century Academy of Excellence in California, Brea Persley’s teacher scolded her in front of th cla: “Sit your nappy-headed self down.”

“When the kids started laughing, it brought back the memories of when I was in 4th grade and kids used to laugh at me and tease me,” the teenager said.

When the student told her parents about the incident, they were outraged. The teacher called and left a voice message, apologizing, saying, in part, “That’s just not me and not intentions in a bad way and I know it came out wrong.”

That was not enough for the parents, who complained to the principal, Giselle Edmond. Instead of getting help, Edmond told the family, according to her mother, “I’m going to let you know right now. I am so happy my teacher called your daughter nappy head. You have a mean little girl and bad things need to happen to mean kids. Your daughter is kicked out of my school.”

In a letter to Williams, the school said her daughter was banned “due to the fact that you scolded the principal.”

Brea’s family said she had a fight last year, has been tardy for school and was cited for chewing gum. Now, the child says she wants to get her hair pressed straight. Her parents said they will not stop until they get some answers — on the teacher and principal. Brea’s family says it’s filing a complaint with the school’s accreditation agency.

In the meantime, the parents need to get its daughter into a school for the final three weeks of the semester.

What people are saying

18 thoughts on “‘Sit Your Nappy Headed Self Down,” Teacher Tells Student, 13

  1. Robert Wrobel says:

    Waaa, her kids a brat. grow thicker skin and quitchyer bitchin..

  2. Principal needs to be fired. The teacher was apologetic, but the principal needs to go to acceptance school. Since when having nappy hair is bad? They need to teach children to appreciate who they are, not make fun of what they look like. I wouldn't want my child at the school where the principal doesn't have an accurate behavior management plan, and it's OK for teachers to put kids down, when they aren't competent enough to handle themselves in a proper manner.

  3. Diana Baskin says:

    A brat? Do you know what a brat is? She is a kid. I work with kids and this is mild. It doesn't deserve being called a name and being kicked out of school. She might as well have called her the N word.

  4. Ignorance is bliss…in this case, you're just as idiotic as the teacher and principal. "Waaa", did you and they think the parents would just sit back and allow the unprofessional behavior of these "educators" to emotionally scar their child. They're bullies, in every since of the word. Bully the child, lower her self-esteem; bully the parents, call and complain, 'I dare you'. I would venture to say Black folks have the thickest skin…but injustice is just that, it shouldn't be tolerated not one iota.

  5. Alice Barden says:

    Who are the adults in this situation, calling kids names is something children tend to do with each other, they certainly don't have to hear it from an adult who is suppose to serve as an example.Any references to people's color or hair, religion, nationality regardless of who is doing the name calling is unacceptable. I realize there are black Americans who refer to other black Americans hair as "nappy" but even so this was a teacher. I, as a white female would never refer to a black America's hair as "nappy" or any other comment that might be offensive, I have two African-American granddaughters and would be very offended if someone, regardless of their color, referred to them in a negative way. We have got to start showing some respect for each other.

  6. Both the teacher and the principal need to go. We can assume this child has been in her class all year; her comment was intolerant of the diversity she's endured all year long. Our former President called for tolerance. Although I'm for acceptance, tolerance at least would have kept her mouth shut and her comments to herself. She has no self-control.

  7. Was the child misbehaving? Sounds like she was a hellion. Behave or face concequences…oh, that's right, we are a nation of whinny ass losers who don't want to follow the rules. Maybe the parents should have been paying attention long before this happened. Instead, let's blame the teacher who couldn't take anymore of the student's crap, so we can play the race card and get some money for being crappy parents. Way to go Brea! Great life lessons!

  8. Vernistene Hooper-Pritchard says:

    I am sick of the lack of disrespect for African American children. It is very ignorant to think that just because you people have the tendency to think that it is ok to be racist and say and do anything to our kids is shameful. Be very careful in what you say because that just may happened to your kids or to someone's kids that you may know. This child didn't have to be doing wrong for the teacher to say what she said. Children don't deserve to be treated that way no matter what their color maybe, we should be able to treat all kids with respect pure and simple.

  9. Oh, here we go with the race card. Who is "you people"? Whites? Or people who don't let their children misbehave in class? Hmmm let me see…who is the racist here? I realize "you people" love to use that word, but it sounds like the teacher was pushed to her limits. Wrong word choice, but probably deserved.

  10. Vernistene Hooper-Pritchard says:

    See that is your problem right there. No matter what the situation was that still don't give her the right to talk to this child that way. Any if you want to make people believe that white kids don't misbehave then you are delusional because no matter what we all teach our kids they do act up at some point in time. I am not a racist my grandson is half white and so if the teacher can't handle pressure then she needs to find another line of work. If a black teacher would have treated a white child that way she/he would have been fired and that is a fact. The first thing you asked was this child misbehaving, and that speaks a lot about you as a person. You need to so some soul searching because we are all equal.

  11. Vernistene Hooper-Pritchard says:

    Caroline Chandler

    One thing that i do want to also make a point about is that white kids commit just as many crime as blacks and other ethnic groups, but the difference is that yours will get probation or a little jail time, but the rest they try to throw the book at. The difference for some of us is that we believe in allowing our kids to pay the consequences for their actions instead of taking up them and bailing them out when they do wrong. We all want what is best for our kids but the still are accountable for their own actions. Tough love never killed anyone.

  12. Vernistene Hooper-Pritchard says:

    Children of all colors and backgrounds misbehave, but your claims are that white kids wouldn't misbehave is class. Well maybe you need to go and read up on this website and then get back to me.

  13. Mia Gilbert says:

    These are the people educating your children. Please don't tell me they are black people.


  15. And you are clearly not one of those intelligent people. Too bad it's impossible to have an adult conversation about the topic at hand.

  16. Vernistene Hooper-Pritchard you sound like a good person and we all have different opinions, but I totally disagree on the crime thing. It's unfortunate, but many more black teens commit crimes than white teens. I'm sure it has a lot to do with socio-economic situations and lack of opportunities for young people and that is sad. In a perfect world, all kids would have two caring parents, good schools, enough money for college, etc. But in the end, we all make choices and have to live with the concequences.

  17. Jeff Ward says:

    I believe that if a student is a bad apple so to speak, that they should be disciplined no matter what color their skin is, but there is a right way to do it. I've seen "nappy" headed white people too. There shouldn't have been any type of hair reference made, but not sure this was a racial slur. The teacher and principal should be terminated for being unprofessional period. No need to get the Reverends Al and Jesse involved to stir up more crap. Exactly what churches do they reverend anyway? I know there are still ignorant racists out there. Usually they are pure white trash. I have many black friends that would agree with me on this next statement…there are many whites and blacks as well as other races that can be referred to as the "N" word. It's how you live and act that defines the "N" word. I say fire the teacher and principal, let the girl finish school and move on.

  18. Gary Bright says:

    nappy hair refers to a texture of hair that is natural, it has not been treated chemically, straighten, permed or relaxed, bleached, or colored, other adjective are kinky, hard, or woolly, so what is the racial component, how about the brothers with dreads, are these often considered nappy, the girls parents are probably doing more to screw up her head that the actual remark itself, NAPPY is now considered a style of hair now, ax Chris Rock!

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