Some parents in Texas say their school district has not done enough after an online game was discovered in which 9th-grade students were “slave-trading” students of color and labeling the group chat “Slave Trade,” “N” Farm, and “N” auction.
According to multiple reports, students at the Daniel Ninth Grade Campus held the auction through Snapchat. In a screenshot of the auction, which was previously named “Slave Trade” and “Nigger Farm,” several students placed bids on how much they would pay for their Black classmates. One person wrote that they would only pay one dollar for a student named Chris, but it “would be better if his hair wasn’t so bad.” Another ninth grader placed a $100 bid on a student named Aven.
District leaders originally sent a letter home to all parents and said the students involved were disciplined. However, some parents are upset with how the district described racism as “cyberbullying.” On Monday (April 12), Aledo Independent School District Superintendent Susan Bohn issued a new statement after the backlash, calling the incident “inappropriate, offensive and racially charged.”
“More than two weeks ago, the district learned of an incident that involved students from the Daniel Ninth Grade Campus bullying and harassing other students based on their race and launched an immediate and thorough investigation that involved law enforcement,” the statement read.
“We made a formal determination that racial harassment and cyber bullying had occurred and assigned disciplinary consequences in accordance with our policy and the Student Code of Conduct. This incident has caused tremendous pain for the victims, their families, and other students of color and their families, and for that we are deeply saddened.”
Mark Grubbs pulled his three children from the district after the incident and says this isn’t the first time his children have experienced racism at their school. “A lot of racism. My son being called out of his name and what not and it got to the point he didn’t mind fighting and that didn’t sit right with me and my wife,” he said. “My son was never a fighter.”
Parents are already planning to show up in force at the Aledo school board meeting next Monday to demand a stronger plan to address racism.