An Oregon elementary school teacher has been placed on leave for protesting the vaccine mandate in an incredibly racist way.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown recently instated a vaccine mandate for K-12 teachers that requires all teachers to be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 Coronavirus by October 18 of 2021.
Teachers who do not comply may find themselves out of a job in education until they comply with the vaccine mandate.
To protest this mandate, an staff member in the Newberg school district showed up to school in blackface.
The staff member, identified as a teacher's aid for special education teachers at Mabel Rush Elementary School, reportedly arrived at school with her face darkened with dye in order to supposedly resemble famous civil rights icon Rosa Parks.
Watch the news coverage here:
- YouTube youtu.be
The teacher's aid has reportedly been put on leave as a result of the incident.
The Newberg school district has since published a statement about the racial incident on its website.
"It is important to remember how blackface has been used to misrepresent Black communities and do harm. We acknowledge the violence this represents and the trauma it evokes regardless of intention."
This is just the latest in a series of controversial incidents to come out of the school district.
In fact, just a week earlier Newberg High School received backlash for a social media group chat titled "Slave Trade" where students cruelly put prices on Black students, joking about how much they would pay for the teens at a slave auction.
Newberg High School principal, Tami Erion, claimed that students participated in a Snapchat group chat where they posted pictures of other students, and referred to them with racist and homophobic slurs.
In addition to this, the Newberg school board had been trying to ban teachers from posting Black Lives Matter and LGBTQIIAA+ pride flags in their classrooms. The school board has expenaded this ban to include all "controversial political symbols" in schools.
Parents of Mabel Rush Elementary School students are outraged over the recent blackface incident.
Shannon Benito, the mother of two daughters who attend the elementary school, said:
"It's just one thing after another and as a parent you question sending your kid to school after awhile, at least I do."
Another parent, Tai Harden-Moore, who has a daughter and a son who attend Newberg High School, said:
"I feel like we're [going] back in time as if some folks really want us to go back to that Jim Crow era, back to the Civil Rights era where Black people didn't have rights."
"I don't buy the innocent ignorance at all. No, no no because there's too much information and history available to you, so ignorance is not an excuse. I think this person was emboldened to do this because of the actions of the board."
Harden-Moore, whose son is Black, said that her son had to change schools due to a racially hostile environment.
"He was called the N-word in 7th grade, the school did very little about it."
"Their approach was to protect the student who did it."
"He's a student athlete and felt he was boxed into the role of athlete, nobody wanted to see him outside of that."
Twitter has exploded in outrage over the incident.
The Newberg School District Superintendent, Dr. Joe Morelock, recently made a statement on the blackface controversy.
"I am horrified, angry, and ashamed that this happened as is nearly every other staff member. The students of color of Newberg deserve so much more this goes against everything I and the vast majority of Newberg School District staff believe and it's unfathomably offensive."