A group of activists gathered in California to protest the hiring of a white teacher for a cultural studies class say it’s nothing personal, just that they’d like to see teachers who reflect the student body.
Community and church leaders present at a news conference on Monday say they want the Fresno Unified School District to reconsider its hiring of a white teacher to instruct minority children on cultural studies.
Rev. Karen Crozier led protests in front of the school, where she discussed why she wants the school to reconsider its hiring decision. She said the new school should have teachers who reflect the student body.
Crozier says she and others were stunned to learn that the person selected to teach three cultural studies courses at the school was white.
“We’re just saying what the community wants. We didn’t fight for a white male or female teacher to educate our babies,” Crozier said, according to the Fresno Bee. “We still are at these racial fault lines, and we want someone who will be able to think critically about those racial fault lines and how do we help heal, to restore the problems that have existed.”
The school hired Peter Beck, who is white, but there is no information on who else was interviewed for the job.
District spokeswoman Micheline Golden said Beck was the best pick for the job, mainly because of his experience teaching cultural studies.
“We are always looking at the best, most experienced, most qualified who can provide the best education for our young people,” she added.
Rev. Paul McCoy of New Light for New Life Church of God says he met with Beck and told Beck it wasn’t about him, but what was best for the black and brown students at the school.