After a recording of a classroom discussion revealed that a teacher had used the N-word in a class and made other racist remarks, a Texas community demanded accountability.
The incident took place in a Klein Collins High School theatre class earlier this month. The audio was partially recorded by a student cell phone and revealed that Norman Grueneich, the teacher, made the offensive comments after a discussion about race.
Parents and community activists were furious when a classroom recording revealed that a Texas teacher had made racial comments. (Photo by KHOU 11/YouTube
You mean, if you don't know what a word is, why aren't you using it? asks a student in the audio record.
Grueneich, a white male, replied with "I don't know." Grueneich, who is a white male, replied, "I don't know." I cannot say the N-word.
Parents and students who listened to the entire recording claim that the teacher made disparaging remarks about Native Americans, and also about the absence of a month for white history.
According to Klein ISD Associate superintendent for Communications Dayna Hernandez, the teacher had been removed from being considered a district employee by Wednesday, October 13.
The following statement was issued by the district:
Klein ISD prides itself on creating safe environments for all students in its schools. The former employee was unable to achieve this goal and has since left Klein ISD. These statements by the former employee are not reflective of our district's shared vision, our employees or Klein ISD. We are sorry that this language affected our students. If any of them wish to speak to one of our counselors, they will be available.
Every child deserves to feel secure and have a positive school experience. We are sorry that the former employee did not do this for our students. The incident remains under investigation.
Parents gathered at the Harris County school to accuse the district of complicity and failure to address the incident until local media got involved.
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I don't want any backlash on my family, students or faculty. A whole week later, there was not one phone call. Jamie Olliver (parent of Grueneichs student) said that there was no email or phone call.
The school is located in Spring Texas and has less than 3,500 students. 36% of the students are Hispanic and 36% are white. 15% are African-American.
Quannel X, a community activist, said that the words of the teacher were offensive and cast doubt on the teachers' ability to grade students fairly.
Quannel said during a press conference, "If you have that mindset about Black people, Hispanics, and Indians, then who knows what you did to your grade book?"
People expressed similar outrage online over the incident.
Your school is home to my son. One of his classmates was in this class. This is bullst, and you all know it. I hope yall do something to stop it. This is not just against the teacher, and his resignation, but also for principles.
History is not white washed. The Caucasians have a long history of cultural appropriation.
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