Skip to comments.Student's KKK Board Game Stirs Controversy
Posted on 04/01/2009 12:25:18 PM PDT by TornadoAlley3
Kansas-It all started as a school project for a class of 7th graders at Andover Middle School. The topic: the effects of racism and oppression in 1930s America.
Students had recently read Mildred Taylor's 1976 novel, "Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry." The book deals with issues faced by African Americans in the first half of the 20th century.
But one student's work is catching the attention of more than just his teachers and classmates. Wichita's NAACP is now looking into a complaint filed by another student's mother, who took offense to one project in particular.
The complaint stems from a board game created as part of a research assignment by one student. The 7th grade boy decided to focus his project on the history of the infamous Ku Klux Klan. School administrators say the student designed the game to accompany his research paper, hoping it would help fellow classmates better understand the impact the white supremacy group had on civil rights.
That game was publicly displayed at last week's open house.
"This is a matter of common sense," says Wichita NAACP President Kevin Myles.
The concerned mother emailed Myles several photos of the board game. As players make their way around the edge, they follow instructions such as: "You forgot to wash your white robe and cannot go to the lynching. You are punished. Move back two spaces."
Another square reads: "The rope you are hung with breaks. Move forward five spaces."
Myles called the game, and especially its public display, "insensitive."
"I think the school could have used better judgment in deciding whether or not to display this," Myles said.
Andover school administrators say they and the student never meant to offend anybody.
"The last intent he would ever have would be to offend," middle school principal Brett White said Tuesday of the student and his work. "He was powerfully moved by the research he uncovered... and couldn't believe some of these things really happened."
White said the student felt others should know about the Klan. The game was not meant as an endorsement.
Myles doesn't blame the student. But he does believe the school should have explained to the class why the game can easily be misconstrued.
Andover schools say the game will not be shared with - or played by - other students. However, the topic of racism and its effects will continue to be taught. Administrators also say they will take greater care with future projects.
White says the reaction the board game has caused is a valuable lesson in itself. He says it shows students first-hand the emotions that still exist in America when it comes to racism. White says that is a lesson a textbook cannot teach.
"We've got to continue to teach these types of things in order for students to have that depth of understanding," White said.
What I always did when I had a lefty teacher was take the liberal line and put as much flawed logic, over-the-top statements, hyperbole, and inaccurate research in as possible.
My own private joke.
Myles doesn't blame the student. But he does believe the school should have explained to the class why the game can easily be misconstrued BY PEOPLE LIKE MYLES.
You know getting srtaight 'A's like that will only make the other students feel bad...
Thankfully, I went to school in an era where you could call them as you saw them, warts and all, so long as you could back it up and still get reasonable grades.
I'd flunk out now or be a test case somewhere...
Since he was doing the Klan, I wonder if he had antiCatholic and antiSemetic squares too.
Since young Mr. Weaselnutz lives in the Wichita area, maybe his next project can be a board game based on this:
Sometimes that’s the only way you can survive. But the experience is always in the back of your mind, and you have to make a decision if you want that type of experience for your kids or not. My guess is that you probably would not want that for your kids, so you make other arrangements for their education, right? Why burden them with a lot of nonsense.