A teacher at Hamilton Elementary School in Sanford, Florida, accidentally typed the N-word instead do the word “bigger” on a homework assignment on Jan. 22.
Terry Day, an African-American mom of a first-grader at the school, told WESH:
That bothered me. I was very offended by it. In today’s society, it’s very prevalent. Racism! It’s very prevalent.
My daughter said to me, she said, “I know that word and I know what that word means, but is this supposed to be on my paper?”
Day said that she spoke to the teacher:
I said, “Well, you didn’t spell-check your word? You didn’t proofread your word before you sent that out?’ And (the teacher) said, “It is a word.” And I didn’t like the attitude behind that one.
The teacher said that explained the “B” and the “N” are next to each other on computer keyboards and she accidentally typed the “N.”
A school spokesman, Michael Lawrence, released a statement to WESH:
The district is aware of the unintentional and unfortunate mistake regarding the typo on the spelling words worksheet. The teacher involved has taught at Hamilton Elementary for many years and is extremely remorseful about the situation.
The school has already fixed and updated the spelling words list and redistributed to the students in that particular class. In addition, a memo has gone home with students sincerely apologizing for the error.
The teacher sent a memo to parents that said:
Dear Parents: Please be advised there was a misspelled word on the blue spelling list I sent home yesterday. Please throw the blue list away and refer to this list for the next six weeks. I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Please contact me if you have any concerns.
Day was upset at the teacher’s note:
“Inconvenience” means sorry for the bother. So, I mean, it was not apologetic, it was not “sorry.” Even when I met with her in person, she wasn’t sorry, wasn’t apologetic, like, “Oh my God, I’m so sorry. I would have removed this.” No! It wasn’t like that.
Day said the teacher should not be punished, but things the teacher should apologize to the first-grade class and their parents.
The school district said the teacher will not likely be punished.