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Appleton School District apologizes for slavery assignment

(Image Source: MGN)
(Image Source: MGN)(KALB)
Published: Jan. 12, 2018 at 8:51 PM CST
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A lesson about slavery in an Appleton high school led to complaints to school leaders and an apology from the superintendent.

As part of an essay assignment in U.S. History, students were asked to consider what qualities they would want in a slave and what instructions they would give their slave.

The essay prompt to help students focus their thoughts to put down on paper asked them to consider such factors as hours, benefits, physical and mental requirements for the job, "relationship with your master", and "relationship with white southerners who don't own you."

Appleton Area School District Superintendent Judy Baseman called the essay prompt "objectionable" and said the material "does not reflect our values as a district and how we want to serve our students and families."

She said the issue was addressed immediately with the teacher, and the district is going to review its curriculum and practices.

"We understand that this essay prompt was and is hurtful and offensive to all of our students," she wrote. (Read the complete statement below.)

Baseman did not identify the teacher or the school.