Editorial: MMSD gets it right after getting it wrong
MADISON, Wis. — The Madison Metropolitan School District was right to reinstate West High security guard Marlon Anderson after wrongly firing Anderson for his use of a racial slur in telling a student not to use the word. While the district has a lot of work to do in establishing more flexible procedures for dealing with racial slurs in the context of its no-tolerance policy the school board and president Gloria Reyes deserve credit for quickly rescinding Anderson’s firing. Credit too to students and citizens who were able to see the difference in Anderson’s appropriate use of the slur as opposed to careless usage meant to inflame.
But if we are to argue for context…and we are…we also support a strict policy for the use of certain words in the context of hate speech in our schools. The goals should be an environment that is both safe and conducive to learning. And yes our schools can, and should, be both.
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