Speaking of dumb: How could educators make such foolhardy comments?

I have found educators are typically careful about what they say in the school setting, but two recent cases show a surprising lack of restraint and sense.

First is the Greene County High School teacher who called a student “the dumbest girl I have ever met.”

An iPad recording also captures history teacher Cory Hunter telling junior Shaniaya Hunter (no relation),”You know what your purpose going to be? To have sex and have children, because you ain’t gonna never be smart.”

I’ll be surprised if this Greene County teacher continues in the classroom given the national outcry over his comments.

The AJC reports it is not clear what the district has done or plans to do about the teacher, but the young woman’s attorney wants him fired or the lawyer will file a motion with the Greene County Superior Court to force the school system to fire him.

But as of Tuesday night, officials at the Greene County School System would not comment on whether Cory Hunter, who is also the boys’ varsity basketball coach, has faced any kind of disciplinary action

“There is no way that man should be in a classroom,” said Shaniaya Hunter’s attorney Ben Windham, who took the case pro-bono.

Since the December incident Shaniaya Hunter has had a harder time staying in the classroom. Part of that is because she had eye surgery in January. (During the teacher’s attack on her, he made fun of her limited eye-sight as well).

But, according to her family, she has also suffered abuse on social media and from classmates who have called her a “snitch” for exposing Cory Hunter. “She sticks to herself now,” said her mother Cathy Wright, who has taken her daughter off of social media. “She cries a lot because it is still in her head.”

You can hear the shocking moment in this WSB news clip:

And then there is the Lakeside High School principal in DeKalb County who resigned this week after a district probe into his alleged comment to security guards and janitors. Principal Jason Clyne is purported to have said, “You don’t want to mess with me. I’m a redneck master with a degree. I run these 40 acres.”

The district pulled Clyne from Lakeside when the remark was reported in late January. Clyne resigned Friday and will work from home, receiving assignments from the Office of Legal Affairs until his contract ends June 30, according to DeKalb school chief Steve Green.

Using state open records laws, the AJC’s Marlon Walker reports further today on the DeKalb Schools investigation today:

District staff investigating that incident uncovered six other allegations made before this school year. Green said Clyne already had been under investigation for two other complaints made during this school year.

“The situation at Lakeside was on my radar, ” Green said Tuesday morning. “The things I knew about, we did an investigation … somewhat early in the process, and we were trying to work through the process.”

According to a file received through an open-records request, investigations found that Clyne had:

> allowed parent volunteers to use his computer log-in to access and update student records

> made unauthorized permanent grade changes for students

> made racial and discriminatory comments about black people to an assistant principal

> made inappropriate sexual comments to an employee

> improperly mediated with students about a Confederate flag using school colors being passed around on social media

Some investigations never reached a conclusion. Ron Ramsay, the district’s chief legal officer at the time, could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

 

Reader Comments 0

50 comments
User777
User777

Listening to that audio made me sick.  The girl asked a simple question.  In addition to calling her dumb, and the grossly inappropriate commentary on her purpose in life, he makes fun of her eyesight.  It becomes hard to hear exactly what he's saying after that because the students start laughing. He moves from directly insulting her to making fun of her with the class.  Kids can be mean at this age. The teachers are supposed to help protect kids from the bullies.  They should not be the lead bully. Disgusting. He should never be allowed to teach again. The fact the school heard this audio and has done nothing since December is equally disgusting.

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@User777 

Reading the full news story today is worse, for evidently other students have followed the teacher's lead by bullying the young woman. I'm very glad to know that her parents have supported her by seeking legal counsel.

quickdigits
quickdigits

Everyone is so damned Sensitive these days! If a teacher says Anything negative to a student, it's considered abuse and the teacher is promptly fired from his/her job. JBBrown1968 is Right: Education is pretty much Dead now, because there is zero tolerance for saying anything negative to a student! Good Lord!!! When I was in school, the teachers had total control of the classroom: If a teacher wanted to hit your wrist with a ruler, he/she could! If a teacher wanted to slap you upside the head, he/she could!!! And!! Guess what?!? I Personally grew up to Respect Adults in Authority!!! Not like today's kids, who have no respect whatsoever for those in authority.

Starik
Starik

@quickdigits Teachers, like other adults in positions of authority, should be given the respect they deserve. No more.

JBBrown1968
JBBrown1968

You people are nuts! In today's trophy society a little honesty can't hurt! Education as is pretty much dead because you want these people to tell your children....Sammy please don't worry about reading comprehension, you are only 6 grade levels deficient. I am positive you make that up the first or second year of med school. 

I need some of the drugs you fools are taking! 

User777
User777

@JBBrown1968 Did you actually listen to the audio? No teacher should ever tell a female student that her only purpose in life is to have sex and bear children because she's too stupid to do anything else.  That is inexcusable.

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@User777 @JBBrown1968 

Nor should the teacher make fun of a student's disability (here, her vision problems) to the class. Does he do this with other special needs students?

Ken
Ken

Let me guess, this is a prequel to teachers needing more money to solve the problem.Typical more questions than answers article.

JBBrown1968
JBBrown1968

@Ken No more money. Just another clueless, classless individual as yourself too be the resident know it all!

Here genius, you should have no problem deciphering this!   _i _ s_i _t !!!!!!!!

Aunt T
Aunt T

Maureen -  I've been teaching since 1994. Anytime I thought I might have upset a student - a child or an adult - I made sure to circle back, clear up any issue, and move us forward. I tend to be 1000 times nicer to some students than they are to me.


That is exactly as it should be.


As teachers, we see the best of our future - and the worst.  We make a huge difference in the lives or our students with little or no thanks. We are asked to do more with less and adapt to the latest "fix it" that will transform our system. It never does. Ultimately, we're held to a higher standard because we are always modeling behavior for our students. I did very little bar hopping in my 20s - at least not unless I was a few hundred miles away.  I pick conservative clothing, and if I rant on social media it under an account people would have to have ESP to connect me with.


Guess what? I knew all that when I signed on the dotted line. I'm no saint. I just listened The professionalism classes covered some of it. Cooperating teachers covered the rest. 


Let me say that again - I joined the profession knowing exactly where I stood in the pecking order. I knew I could handle it because I love teaching. Ask my friends - I am always teaching. 


I'm proud to be a teacher. If I can one thank you a month, I can live with that. My self-respect does not come solely from my career. I've cultivated other ways - volunteering, rescuing, etc - to help me feel appreciated.


I have several inappropriate things I would like to say to these teachers, but I'll settle with "What were you thinking?"  Then I'll ask a harder one. "Do you love your students even when they are not living up to their potential or are being rude?" If the answer is no, please, for your sake and theirs leave the profession. You deserve to love what you do - and students deserve teachers who love them - attitude and all. 


Maybe it is time to bring professionalism and professional presence back into the PD toolkit. We all need that reminder. Some of us need more than that.


PappyHappy
PappyHappy

Maureen, just look what happens daily in our secondary education system!  We -- collectively throughout the Country -- continue to fall behind other industrialized Countries!  For Pete's sake!  We wonder why Asian nations are eating our lunch economically.  Take a look at their global standings in EDUCATION -- and it is not improving!


Our 'SCHOOLS OF EDUCATION' should be ashamed of themselves for graduating too many of their students.


How can we ever get ahead in the STEM arena, when we have 'teachers' in a math classroom who had difficulty with math 101, and decided to switch to 'education' as a major!


Then, we have the perverts we read about daily, and now this 'administrator' who clearly demonstrated an intelligence quotient below 90!  But guess what?  He will be rehired somewhere -- possibly, even in Georgia!


We have few standards in the personnel arena for those we pay to teach our kids, and until there is a leader who will start breaking some bowls, things will not improve in the US!

Aunt T
Aunt T

@PappyHappy  While I find a great deal of what you say hyperbolic, I do agree with the idea that education majors are not what we need to improve our schools.

First and foremost, an educator needs content knowledge. Then, he or she needs the passion to teach the content. 

Our teachers need to be majoring in Math, Science, etc., and taking education courses are required to get a certificate. I was very lucky to go to a college that emphasized that approach. 

As for the math statement, I'm a literature, writing, and critical education teacher. I model math proficiency as often as possible. In the world we live in, true educators have to be trans disciplinary.

Gunnplay
Gunnplay

There's nothing new here. My granddaughter in second grade wore her Mickey Mouse watch to school. Teacher sent a note to parents that she "fidled all the time with her risk watch."

Aunt T
Aunt T

@Gunnplay Sorry for the unlike. I was giggling. Can we say thank you to spell check and auto-correct?

Gunnplay
Gunnplay

@Aunt T @Gunnplay Yes, but this was a hand written note. This teacher was also one of three staging the older students' spelling bee!

Ron Cuen
Ron Cuen

I don't have enough information to judge or form an opinion about these incidents.  I blame that on the reporter not digging into these stories so we have a better picture.

Starik
Starik

@Ron Cuen Listen to "coach." Should anybody who speaks black English in that way be teaching?  37 years experience?  Doesn't History have some importance in education?  Time to retire, and time to remove all the unqualified teachers like him.

Aunt T
Aunt T

@Ron Cuen I'll save you the trouble. I'm a veteran educator. Those videos crossed the line and obliterated it. You never label a student dumb, you never suggest they are "only" good for breeding, and you never invoke slavery as an allusion to improve behavior. This is not a judgement or opinion. This is a fact and mostly born of common sense. I can't think of a single teacher who would want their child talked to this way. If it is not okay for their kid - it is not okay for any kid.

Another comment
Another comment

He only graduated from Albany State in 2000 and something. I don't think he has 37 years of experience, but is 37 years old. He is too ignorant to properly express himself.

xxxzzz
xxxzzz

People say stupid things, even bright people.  If you fired people for one act of stupidity, nobody would have a job.

Aunt T
Aunt T

@xxxzzz While true, as educators we don't get that "one act." We learn that from day one of classroom management. If we can't handle that, we don't belong in the classroom.

Another comment
Another comment

This is verbal and mental abuse. It is child abuse of a person in his care! Teachers are held to a higher standard.

quickdigits
quickdigits

@Another comment Oh Good Lord, give me a Break! Child Abuse?? When I was in school, there was Real child abuse...teachers were allowed to slap the crap out of a student who was out of line....and parents Supported the teachers who did so! No questions asked! The result of this what you call "child abuse?  Law-abiding adults who respect authority!

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

I just want to point out that those remarks are as offensive on gender grounds as on racial grounds, for Hunter and Clyne are making general insults about girls as well as black people. They must treat their white female students the same way. As a white retired female professor who lived through the periods of black liberation in the 1960s and women's liberation in the 1970s, I am infuriated that some white males in education still think that they can treat young black people/women this way. I sure hope that they get ousted!



Wascatlady
Wascatlady

@OriginalProf Amen, sister!  It can be insidious, as well as pervasive.  And, if you complain or call it out, you can be called "hypersensitive" and "hysterical" and "politically correct."  I reply, "No, just correct."

Aunt T
Aunt T

@OriginalProf Thank you! I can't decided if I'm more offended by the racist undertones (and yes it is racist no matter what race the man is), the sexism, or the audacity of these two to call themselves educators - a title I work hard every day to deserve.


It sounds like you were in the classroom in the decades before I started (I first taught in 1994). Thank you for setting a standard. Some of us do try to live up to it.

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@Aunt T @OriginalProf 

I was in graduate school in the '70s, when I also was an Instructor. This was the decade when "Women's Lib" came on the scene, and everyone stopped using the word "girl." I'd love to  have seen what would have happened to Corey Hunter if he had spoken to a young black female student that way then--with a black feminist present!

Another comment
Another comment

It galls me how black women allow black men to put them down repeatedly. Black women fail to realize the power that they have if they would refuse to have sex with these black men that treat them like crap.

I have never understood why black women sleep and breed with black men that are Felons. Felons who live off them and cheat on them with multiple women that have multiple children with them.

As this "teacher" said you are worth nothing but to have sex and have children. Of course then you can collect the check, get a free apartment, cell phone, etc.. That these men primarily convicted Felons will live off of.

quickdigits
quickdigits

@OriginalProf  I grew up back in the 50's and 60's, and we often would say: "sticks and stones can break my bones, but names can never hurt me". Now, if a student is called "Stupid or Ignorant" by a teacher, that teacher is immediately Fired! Education these days Sucks....and it's all due to this dumb "be careful, don't "offend" anyone, especially black people" BS.......that's exactly what politically correctness is: BS!!!

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@Starik @OriginalProf 

I just went online, and after some searching found a news story with a photo---you're correct. This makes it worse to me, for it's outdated sexist BS and not racist BS. That's how he's training the young guys he coaches. Hope he loses his job and the lawsuit!

eulb
eulb

@Starik  Thank you for discovering and sharing the fact that this was a black male teacher telling a black female student that she's fit only for having sex and babies.  I'm totally shocked. But truth is truth.  For doubters, here's a photo of teacher-coach Cory Hunter. http://tinyurl.com/hwknlsw 

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@Wascatlady @eulb @Starik 

Do you mean the male athletes, or the male students in his classes? My guess is that the "dumb" male students in his classes are ignored. Btw, the news article today reveals what she said that made him shame her as "dumb": she didn't know who Sojourner Truth was.

Niobe
Niobe

I'm sure what we're supposed to take away from these two highly unusual instances of stupidity ... is that white racism lives, and that affirmative action plus the rest of the failed liberal agenda are validated.

Despite all the evidence the black community is not helped -- and is in fact too often hurt -- by liberal policies.

We're after all Americans and therefore hostages of the racial grievance industry. For eternity.

sneakpeakintoeducation
sneakpeakintoeducation

Will you please expand on what the failed liberal policies that hurt the black community are? Also, what policies have the right put in place that have helped minorities?

Aunt T
Aunt T

@Niobe First, I would suggest taking what is there. The "teachers" in this video are not teachers and have no right to call themselves such.  At best, they are pretenders. I don't care what genders or races are on either side of these comments. Belittling a student is wrong - period.


Second, not everything falls into the nice little box of liberal and conservative. When you pigeonhole people, you fail too consider the factors that make each of us unique. Those factors are why racism, sexism, etc. if a crutch. If you group people together - even by politics - you avoid having to deal one to one. 


We'll never solve anything that way - ever.

tinala
tinala

He should be fired for making those kind of statements to a student.