For Black History Month, elementary school students at P.S. 201 in Flushing, N.Y., were tasked with writing about any prominent historical figure but when a few decided upon slain civil rights leader Malcolm X (pictured), some teachers at the school put the brakes on their selection, reportedly referring to the controversial activist as “bad” and violent,” reports the New York Daily News.
A few parents of the grade schoolers were angered by the educator’s anti-Malcolm X stance and could not fathom why they painted the iconic leader as such a malevolent demagogue to the children. Parent Angel Minor said her 9-year-old son told her: “Mom, we were doing black history projects and I was told we can’t do Malcolm X because he was violent.”
And Minor made sure that her son didn’t buy in to that message, “[My mom said,] ‘I want him to know and understand.’ My mom took a stand because something was X’d out, and my mom made a difference. She said, ‘I want him to know that Black history really means something. To be Black means a lot.’”
The parents not only took their complaints to the school principal but to the district as well. Council member Rory Lancman, whose Queens district encompasses the Flushing school, also got wind of the controversy surrounding the Black History project. “Certain historical figures might be complicated, might be a challenge to learn about, but kids need to learn about them,” Lancman told NBC New York.
Lancman and other community leaders met with parents and school officials at the district to discuss the incendiary matter. The councilman told NBC New York, “The school took them seriously,” he said. “There’s a plan for going forward. The school acknowledged there was a mistake to leave the kids with the impression that Malcolm X is somehow an [in]appropriate subject to study.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Education said in a statement, “Malcolm X is a historical figure and a hero to many New Yorkers that we believe should be celebrated in our schools.”
Watch news coverage of P.S. 201′s no-Malcolm X assignments.
The grade school, which has a 43 percent Black student population, was at the center of controversy in 2012 when a kindergarten teacher gave her students a worksheet with a picture of a gun and a robber on it for a spelling lesson.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
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5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
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6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
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7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
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8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
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9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
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10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
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11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
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12. Late nights mornings
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13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
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14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
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15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
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16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
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17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
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18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
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19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
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20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
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21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
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22. Claudia Jordan: ....
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23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
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24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
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25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
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