Three Texas teachers are on paid administrative leave and under investigation after a racist multiple-choice question appeared on a middle school quiz.
The multiple-choice question, which asked about Chinese cultural norms, offered racist stereotypes like the use of dogs and cats in food as possible answers.
“I was shocked and horrified. I was like, 'Who made this quiz?'” said Joy Lim, whose 12-year-old sister took the quiz.
Lim, a college student going to school remotely, noticed the question while looking at her sister’s work.
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“With this example, we see that starting from middle school the students are taught to think differently about China, about Asian Americans, people who look different than them,” said Lim.
In a statement, the district told NBCDFW:
“Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD values our diverse community of learners and staff. Actions or language disrespecting any people group are not acceptable and do not represent our core belief system.
"Recently we learned of a situation where three teachers used inappropriate language about Asian Americans on a secondary social studies test. The words used on the test question were derogatory and hurtful. The teachers have been placed on administrative leave until the investigation is complete.
"CFBISD recently launched a diversity training initiative for staff. The district will enhance these training opportunities in an effort to create a more inclusive and respectful environment.”
Leaders in the Asian American community believe it is especially concerning that the language on the quiz was approved and cleared by multiple administrators.
“The fact of the matter is when you instill that idea to middle school kids that kind of creates divisiveness instead of having an inclusive idea of welcoming everyone to this country,” said John Jun, Vice President of the DFW chapter of the Korean American Coalition.
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Lim hopes that by sharing the question over social media an important conversation will continue, encouraging others to step up and point out Asian-directed hate and racism.
“I think it is people’s duty if they see wrong happening to speak out,” said Lim.