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97 Comments

  1. 51

    suzana

    it’s not about a race or religion. EVERY child deserves the same quality of education but realistically won’t get it. This is an international problem. She had the right to express her opinion but she shouldn’t have just focused in on a teacher color. As a teacher I agree that their are many bad teachers out their that shouldn’t be teaching. The school system in the US is failing every child.

  2. 52

    Fred McMurray

    I’m a white middle aged male who when he was about 13 yrs old was given the biography of Frederick Douglass by a white teacher. I was so in awe of the man that I wanted to change my name to Frederick Douglass. That was 37 yrs ago and I’m still in awe of the man.

  3. 53

    suzana

    I do feel sorry for the girl getting kicked out of school for expressing her opinion. It’s horrible that she was treated in this matter. A young girl discovering the world and forming opinions getting kicked out of school over an opinion.

  4. 54

    Bob

    There are three sides to every story – “yours, mine and the truth.” The one fact that everyone agrees with is that Jada is a very special young lady. The adults need to quit bickering and get on with her education. In the long run It is not important if she attends school 1, 2 or 3. I believe that she will exceed no matter where she attends. If Jada is to have a happy, healthy life she needs to learn how to get along with all people that she interacts with, even the teachers that she is smarter than. May peace be with you.

  5. 55

    Warren Jason Street

    “It seems to me that despite intellectual aspirations and the pursuit of excellence, there is still room for respect for authority. ”

    STOP! That’s enough nonsense for one day.

    What you fail to understand is that the essay was, through and through, an intellectual exercise in speaking truth to power. Here was a young lady who, through the abilities of her mind and her education, able to say to the people who were NOT listening to their students, “you are not reaching us and you are not doing what you were charged to do.”

    She called them out. She embarrassed them. She told a bunch of weak-minded adults to grow up and start teaching.

    To suggest that she should have had “respect” for them is to ignore the fact that respect appeared throughout her essay–respect for herself, for the examples that have gone before her, and respect for the idea of learning. The teachers demonstrated no respect whatsoever for truth, learning, or a young lady with the ability to shame them.

    Whenever you see someone in a position of power abusing their power and wasting their potential, shame them. That’s the American way.

  6. 56

    david

    I agree with jada, but i dont know if the teachers are black,white or both it would not surpprise me either way fredric douglass spoke the truth as he saw it and lived it not just past down resentments and hate from his parents and grandparents and so on.

  7. 57

    Tonya Sissel

    I am a white teacher. I have not had white students in my classes for three years. I do not believe that anyone is “unteachable” but I believe that there are students who do not care to learn. Their parents and peers do not stress to them the importance of an education. This young woman definitely understands that an education is the vehicle to freedom. I do find it difficult that every white teacher she has ever been in contact with during her nine years of schooling were inept and uncaring. Neither can I believe that every teacher of color that she has been in contact with was a teacher who taught every student successfully – especially those who did not care to learn nor did their parents care to be involved in their child’s education. If this is so then I definitely want to meet these teachers and observe their teaching because I tell everyone – including my students – that I am not perfect and I want to become the best teacher that I can to allow all my students who desire it to become academically successful.

    As to the young lady being expelled – how DARE the school? She, even at 13 years of age, has the right to her opinion and the fact that the teacher(s)/administration/etc did not like it is just too bad. What they need to do is ask themselves that if a SUCCESSFUL student feels as if she is not getting the best education possible what then can be done to improve? I know that teaching is a thankless job. I know that teachers are underpaid, underappreciated and overworked. But I also know that every day I step into my classroom I am there for one reason: my kids. If I can do anything to help them then that is what I need to do. This school was wrong in its actions and lashed out because someone called them onto the carpet for an answer to a very difficult question. We all have feelings and they do get hurt. The human reaction is to lash out at whomever causes us pain. But the better person would be strong enough to admit, even after the fact, that they acted wrongly and work with the person(s) involved to make it right. As a teacher, I am ashamed of the administration and faculty of this school and I am very proud of this young lady. Whether I agree with her or not she is brave, strong, and definitely one of our country’s future leaders!

  8. 58

    Dale Ludwig

    Last time I check this was America! As long as there is no malice intent, she is allowed to write anything she wants and it doesn’t matter who/whom she offends.

    This school and it’s officials should be held accountable for there actions and held to the US Constitution.

  9. 59

    Andre

    This truly gives me pause, how could they attack a child, a child they are responsible for, to see that she is in an environment that promotes the truth, education and gives her a place to reach her goals? This innocent child spoke from the heart, she put her own thoughts to paper and now they attack her for her honesty. I hope the people from her original school question their own value as educators, perhaps they are in the wrong field.

    Bless this child.

  10. 60

    Yolanda

    This girl shouldn’t be kicked out! The teachers probably just put F’s on all her tests even if she got 100% on them. The teachers don’t like people speaking bad about them, so they punish them, even if it’s true. This girl spoke from her heart, and got punished for it. Most adults and parents you know tell you to do this, but when you do, you get punished. What are you supposed to do now? Jada had a right, she spoke, and nobody liked it. She had a strong heart.

  11. 61

    javier

    the teachers or schools probably have overacted but the girls essay could of been of little bit more sensitive or with a clear comment that was then and this is now. Teacher care about what they teach, mostly its is about the student not caring to learn.

  12. 62

    Lora Neal

    Jada Williams is an intelligent young lady who should be praised for writing what she feels is the truth and not be punished for speaking the truth about children not being taught to read properly and praised fpr writing her essay. The teahcers in that school should not be offended but should praise her for speaking the truth. The parents shoild obtain a lawyer and sie the districtr for violation of her wright to speak the truth.

  13. 63

    norma

    I was an educator for over 40 years. I never met a student who didn’t want to learn. However, I did know students who were turned off to learning by teachers who didn’t care. It starts during the early formative years…kindergarten and primary grades. African-American males are particulary subjected to being singled out, ignored and become discipline problems. Hence, school becomes a place of ridicule and degradation, not of learning. This is particularly common in urban areas where families are living in poverty and can’t provide the support their children need. This is how the cycle begins. The book “The Destruction of Black Males” by Kwanze Kunjufu describes in detail how these young males are broken down by 2nd grade. So I want to set the record straight about “children who don’t want to learn”…it doesn’t exist.

  14. 64

    norma

    I was an educator for over 40 years. I never met a student who didn’t want to learn. However, I did know students who were turned off to learning by teachers who didn’t care. It starts during the early formative years…kindergarten and primary grades. African-American males are particulary subjected to being singled out, ignored and become discipline problems. Hence, school becomes a place of ridicule and degradation, not of learning. This is particularly common in urban areas where families are living in poverty and can’t provide the support their children need. This is how the cycle begins. The book “The Destruction of Black Males” by Kwanze Kunjufu describes in detail how these young males are broken down by 2nd grade. So I want to set the record straight about “children who don’t want to learn”…They don’t exist.

  15. 65

    reasonable

    Am i missing something here? It seems perfectly reasonable that she got in trouble. Could you imagine what would happen if a white student said something about “black teachers”? Plus, she did not follow the assignment.

  16. 66

    mary pitts

    Simply put….The INTELLIGENT STUDENT, called Rochester school district out on their mess…instead of improving…they discarded her! I say bring this story.out to National attention…petitions need to ne formed…get on the blogs, radio talk shows, So what it takes to bring severe ATTENTION!!! CALLING THE SCHOOLS IS NOT ENOUGH. WRITE LETTERS SEND THEM ALL OVER…TO NEWSPAPERSC MAGAZINES,…WHOEVER WILL LISTEN!

  17. 67

    Lenora J. Simpson

    Greetings, I am a Christian because I “BELIEVE GOD.” God knows Miss Williams and all about school #3. I’m 64 years old, mother and grandmother. My mother, who is no long with me use to say “Nora don’t mess wit nobodies children, a 40 year old man and woman is somebodies child. What you do to somebodies child will come back on your own. Leave peoples children alone.” loveu2

  18. 68

    Marcus

    I feel like the schools nationwide need more young students like Miss Jada Williams. she is a very smart, intelligent, and is not afraid of speaking the truth. now the schools and teachers get upset and mad because this young lady did her homework? not only did she do her homework she got an award for it. not only did she do her homework and got an award for it she called it how she saw it. and they want to penalize her for that. I call bs and i feel like we need to take action on the school she was in. its not right at all. they say they want to keep us as black people down and try and make it seem like its the students dont want to learn but as you can see in this incident the teachers are the ones who didn’t want to learn or teach.

  19. 69

    Ted

    I read most comments here by teachers that claims students are not willing to learn. First please read the full sentence: “A grand price was paid in order for us to be where we are today; but in my mind we should be a lot further, so again I encourage the white teachers to instruct and I encourage my people to not just be a student, but become a learner.”

    She is actually saying that it is not only up to the teacher but also to the student. After reading these comments I realize why America is in the situation it is economically. If not even the teachers reads the whole article above and still comments how are they expected their students will do the same? To all teachers who comments her essay with that kids are not willing to learn please read again and then comment. BTW I think this Girl should be exported to a country that appreciates her free thinking, not a fascist state like US.

  20. 70

    Lya

    To Reasonable: Yes, you are missing something. The article doesn’t tell us the guidelines for the essay. All it says is that she wrote an essay “comparing and contrasting her school experience in 2012 to the educational challenges described in “The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass“,; and that she wrote her “essay on her impressions of Frederick Douglass’ first autobiography the Narrative of the Life”. So we don’t know if that was the particular assignment or not, so you can’t say that she didn’t “follow the assignment”. And the other problem I have with your statement, with all due respect, is that even if that were true–let’s say the essay should have been about something else entirely–even having turned in an assignment that was “wrong” should not have resulted in an all out assault against her by adults charged with protecting her mind and encouraging its growth. If the teachers felt attacked, as the ADULTS in the situation, perhaps a penalty along with detention and a parent/teacher conference could have sufficed. Not entering her essay into the competition being the penalty I referred to above, along with all the rest. And then leave it alone. Go back to her instruction. But they didn’t do that. With the full support of the principal, and school board I’m assuming, they pushed this student out with no regard to her education, and I find that shameful. That’s the crux of our collective awe, not the content of the essay per se. Clearly you seem to take issue with its content, and that’s fine. I haven’t read it so I can’t say, but I’m sure it was well done as everyone else in the article is certain of that. But as a teacher myself, had I received an essay that was exceptionally well written, but didn’t address the topic I set forth, and was a bit scathing to administrators and faculty, I would have dealt with it in a much more professional and respectful manner. Their feelings got hurt and instead of showing this child the right way to react in this situation, they sank to a child’s level, attacked and bullied her and got rid of her. And that’s disgusting.

  21. 71

    Standing Up

    Jada was/is very intelligent to actually understand and be able to also put into HER OWN WORDS what his autobiography meant to her. I think that the school did a huge injustice to treat her in the manner in which they did. Instead, of reacting the way that they did it should have been more so, of speaking with her to find out where she was really coming from not treat her in that manner, let alone change her grades to failing grades and not want to provide the tests or paperwork in which she had gotten the low scores on. A person(s) are entitled to get upset when we feel that something is directed towards us, but to act out of pure malice without knowing or wanting to know the full story is outrageous and beyond me. A freedom to have an opinion is something that we all have and cannot be taken away (even though people may try). She is only 13 and has a very strong opinion and has an outlook that many do not have (meaning that it is rare), so kudos to her and her parents for raising a child that has a hunger to learn, write, and a passion for what she believes. It shows a lot for her parents and how she was brought up. I pray that Jada and her family can find peace within themselves to move forward and for her to become stronger than before.. (In the face of trials and tribulations comes GREAT strength)

  22. 72

    Derek Rothenheber

    I am a white college student studying Microbiology and Biochemistry at the University of Maine. I value the expression of opinion. It is of the utmost importance. America is filled with a bunch of people who follow the status quo. They don’t question anything. If we don’t stand up and fight for our beliefs, how can we advance as a society? In the words of the late George Carlin, “It’s all bullshit folks. Question everything.” I have personally called this school several times to express my displeasure.

    Also, at a stage of learning when education is critical the school is turning a student away when she has done nothing wrong. The administration needs to held accountable for unspeakable actions. Replace them!!

  23. 73

    Speaking the truth comes with a price

    I am a teacher just completing 35 years of teaching. Never in my wildest dreams did I think a child would be treated so badyly for completing an assignment. In this day and time, it is ashame to say that you have to watch what you say and how you say it. Unfortunately, some people cannot handle the truth. My hat goes off to you young lady for having the courage, guts and glory to express yourself. What happened to freedom of speech? To the parents..continue to protect your child. She is very special and gifted. God bless you.

  24. 74

    evette frm phily

    2012….its a dayum shame what was done to a 13yo child for speaking her mind…no white teachers cannot or ever teach us a history they did not go threw…she spoke her mind and done as she was asked…in yes we must read and learn ourselves…these schools don’t teach black children the correct way….chris columbus did not discover thee americas but they still teaching that dayum lie….you go jada continue to speak your mind…..

  25. 75

    Making The Call

    I’ve read through all of the comments and many poeple seemed concerned. My question to the concerned is have you made the call? I’ve called. What about you?

  26. 76

    Susan McKiver

    Out of the mouths of babes. I commend the young lady for not only speaking up but speaking the truth. I have raised 6 kids in the Rochester city school district. I have often times stated that these “white female teachers” just out of college themselves are ill-equiped to handle some of the most difficult students in the school district. When my oldest son who is now 21 was in the 4th grade he at times a little rambunctious at times, his teacher did reach out to me by telephone and on the 2nd call she suggested that I look into the possibility of getting him on some type of medication. Needless to say I was taken a back by her advice and I told her in no uncertain terms that he didn’t need to be put on medication, what he needed was some disciplining which of course he got when he came home. I didn’t get anymore phone calls from that teacher. Four of my children including my son have graduated from high school, have attended/graduated college and are productive citizens. My comments are not meant to be racist, I am just speaking from past experience.
    Miss Williams is spot on in her criticism of her teachers as she sees it. I believe that reaction of the teachers and administrators of School 3 should be ashamed of themselves for what they did to this promising young woman. Like they say, “the truth hurts”.

  27. 77

    william maru

    the child Jada is one of the bravest child I ever heard,and her teachers are the ones who are cowards and their actions must be condemned by every one .They did a deservince to the whole world.The Jadas of this world must be encouraged and guided to help them exploit their gift fully and to the benefit of themselves and the world in general.

  28. 78

    Anthony

    The young lady was given a project opened a book and the lights went on. At that very moment what she was reading was her actually reality in her school. It now was a personal level of understanding and education. She now was inspired to write and speak for the unheard. She was excellent! By the reaction she got from her school she was not far off. Young freedom writer write on, write on.

  29. 79

    Octavia

    i called and just as i expected i wasnt able to talk to her…i was told “she is very busy in our school” WOW she new what i wanted

  30. 80

    Amilkar

    “If you do not understand the system of racism, what it is, and how it works, then everything that you do understand will only confuse you.” – Neely Fuller Jr.

    The “real” racists in this tragedy are the people who were miffed by the opinions of a 13-year old teenager. I may have been there, but I’m more than certain that the very people who kicked this young lady out of Rochester City’s School # 3 were white people who couldn’t bear the criticism and truth spoken from this young lady’s mouth.

    For those readers who just happen to be white and refuse to accept Blacks’ criticism of the characteristics and traits of the system of racism, it is understandable what your reactions will be in the dialogue that follows. But remember this: your refusal to acknowledge the truth, as reflected in Ms. Williams essay, not only puts you on the defensive but cofirms the existence of “an unspeakable understanding among whites [and honorary whites].” If you would only chose “justice” over “racism”, both Blacks and whites would be more successfully in preventing such tragedies as experienced by promising young people as Ms. Williams.

  31. 81

    Kevin Mark

    I think these humans, to give them the benefit of the doubt, need a course on Institutional Racism taught by this smart, insightful child. Who else will insult their uninformed worldview next?

  32. 82

    Katman

    The problem faced by All of US is the manipulation of society by the rich ruling elite that has converted daily activities into sham persecutions to defend their white gentry.

    The most EVIL word in society used to manipulated & control the masses is “person” – look up the meaning in Black’s Law Dictionary – it means “corporation” – which is a DEAD THING.

    IFF you claim to be a “person” you are tricked to believe you have given up you G-d given unalienable rights which is untrue –
    as you cannot give up what was given.

    The society perpetrates this fraud using uneducated, mentally incompetent, disingenuous teachers, & other Public Servants to convince & manipulate the population.

    We can & MUST do better.

  33. 83

    Tanya Jackson-Smith

    Those “certain” teachers who can’t handle the results of a 13-year old student’s homework assignment, probably need to go teach at a school that reflects their own culture, if they can’t deal with the TRUTH!!!!

    SHAME ON PRINCIPAL Connie Wehner, who is supposed to encourage students to dig deep when learning, and strive for excellence in education, not thwarp their educational efforts. She needs to go someplace where she will be more useful. AND her last name is Wehner – how quickly she forgot!

  34. 84

    Mona

    Schools are still of the mindset that they are producing factory workers, and because of this learning to think is not as important as learning to follow authority. This needs to change. Now. We are now longer a country filled with factory workers. We need to start teaching our students critical thinking skills, puzzle solving, and how to live in our modern society. I am so very ashamed that this has happened to such a bright young lady. Hopefully this will not hold her back, but propel her forward to new and greater heights.

  35. 85

    WILL

    so it is the “White teachers’ ” faults that modern “thugism” culturally demand a “rap sheet” longer than one’s penis to be regarded as “fit to survive” in their culturally predatory atmoshpere that they themselves created and maintained? why aren’t black parents taking control of their child’s education? I know My kid was made to do her homework every night. . .before play or dinner. . .I know that I read her materials to be sure she was being taught a historically accurate version of the democratic indoctrination that prolifigates in text books. . .I know that MY kid KNOWS the World Trade Centers were destroyed by MUSLIM RADICALS only because WE DID NOT BELIEVE THE SAME BOOK THEY BELIEVE IN. . .AND FOR NO OTHER REASON. i kNOW THAT mY KID knows RIGHT FROM WRONG, AND THAT SHE WILL MAKE THE CORRECT CHOICES. . .BECAUSE i EDUCATED HER AND EVEN HAD MAJOR DISCUSSIONS WITH THE SCHOOLS WHO DEMANDED THAT SHE SPOUT THEIR BULLSH*T OVER SPEAKING THE TRUTH.

  36. 86

    Gordon Davis

    Jada is obviously a bright and educated young lady. I agree with her passion, and I agree with her general intent which was to point out problems with modern educators, and to a minor degree the students. I think she should have directed her comments at all teachers so she could avoid being seen as biased in her presentation. I also think that she should have focused more time on the bad students who refuse to learn, and make the learning environment more difficult. I also think the school is being very immature about it, and they are obviously having prideful and stubborn reactions. I wish there was some kind of over-site committee that could discipline the school.

  37. 87

    J M Cornwell

    Had attitudes like these teachers not infected the public after the Civil War, Frederick Douglass would have been the first black vice president, running with Victoria Claflin Woodhull, the first woman president.

    Whether or not the teachers like what Jada said, the girl is right and they should learn to accept criticism and do something about it — something that does not include punishing a bright young girl who is willing to say what she sees. The emperor and all his minions are naked.

  38. 88

    Dan

    WILL, does yOUR KID know how to use a caps lock key?
    Jada was a mostly A student before her teachers came down on her, and clearly knows right from wrong. What is your point, exactly?

  39. 89

    Elizabeth

    UPDATE!!! I called the school and they referred me to Ms. Linda Dunsmore, who works in the central office of the school district. She actually spoke to me and said this story is over a month old and in that time, the central office has been “working with the parents to resolve the situation to their satisfaction”. I said, well, I’m a white person from California calling you to say that while this isn’t exactly Seminole county, it’s extremely unfortunate timing that the media is already focused on the persecution of an African-American teenager. For anyone who wants to call the central office: 585 262-8373

  40. 90

    squiggles

    I used to explore abandoned buildings as a hobby, and I had the great creepy thrill of hanging out in an abandoned opera house in Binghamton NY where Frederick Douglas had spoken 112 years before. It made me learn more about this incredible man, and I just can’t believe a 13 year old READER and STUDIER of history, is having to go thru this:

  41. 91

    Jamie

    The difference between black children and white children is that between the ages of 1 and 5 white children are taught to learn and behave. Most white children know how to read prior to their first day of school or can ad least recognize letters and numbers. Black children run wild and are not given the attention they need. I have seen countless black children in public being abused or ignored by their mothers (fathers never present). By the time they get into school they are already behind, and their behavior is unmanageable. Requesting that a teacher undo everything the child has learned and also teach him what he should already know is simply unrealistic. Accusing teachers of somehow restricting black children from learning in order to hold back their race is ridiculous.

  42. 92

    Geneva Chapman

    I tried to call the school to offer its principal and staff some staff development training in recognizing and reinforcing critical thinking skills in their students. Never have I seen a better example of a student engaging in critical thinking than Jada Williams. I’ve educator been an educator for nearly forty years and have long suspected that black children are being treated just as young Jada deduced after her study of slavery and the life of Frederick Douglas. I’m presently a doctoral student researching outside of school community programs that are willing to teach poor and minority students what schools are unwilling or unable to teach and there are more and more of them every year. I shared Jada’s story which is as sad and tragic as what happened to Trayvon Martin with my professional seminar class this morning and my professor who is from Russia, one of the many nations American children lag behind in math, reading, and science, committed that here’s a student demonstrating the very skills our children need to compete in a global economy and of being encouraged, she’s persecuted? Pretty soon those community programs are going to teach enough children to think critically and problem-solve, as well as the six other survival skills needed in the 21st century (The Global Achievement Gap: Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach the New Survival Skills Our Children Need – And What We Can Do About It by Tony Wagner) and schools, principals, and teachers like the one that couldn’t face a truth told to by a 13 year old scholar will be irrelevant and unnecessary.

  43. 93

    Tbone

    The English teacher who shared this girl’s essay around should have been fired for just that. Instead, it could have been used as an opportunity for deeper understanding: in my opinion, the teacher should have asked to meet with the student and her parents in order to a)further explore the girl’s feelings of disenfranchisement (feeback is good!),and b)to share a teacher’s perspective on trying to teach classrooms full of disruptive and apathetic students year after year. Maybe they could have reached a better understanding.

  44. 94

    Peter Shawn Anderson Sr.

    It is a shame for the teacher and the schools administration to respond the way they have to the Student, Parents and the Foundation. This information should be forwarded to the Head of Education Services at the White House and all involved should be retrained but not retained. They do not belong in the Education System if as Leaders, they cannot understand constructive response of a Thirteen Year old student.

  45. Pingback: Random political image thread - Page 50 - Pelican Parts Technical BBS

  46. 95

    Mike

    I feel that a written, web based or emailed petition might be more effective than directly calling the principal. In some cases it could be considered incitement to harass, and could lend credibility to this ludicrous position of the schools. You should be able to get a hearing from the school board and have the situation reviewed and addressed. Even if the student HAD written something totally inappropriate, the punishment was beyond inappropriate. Although I will say that this is reflective of the modern world around us and Im certain this will not be the last time she will encounter this type of treatment for speaking her mind. Corporate America has become quietly racist & segregated.

  47. 96

    Joia

    Its tragic how our most brilliant students are under seige not only by their fellow students, who are jealous of them, but also persons of legal age to be classified as adults, but who act like juveniles also hell bent on destroying our most promising black youth. This principal should be fired, the school penalized for undue punishment and harrassment of this former honor student and her family. I would say a law suit is in order. What they’re doing to this student is criminal.

    Here this young lady produced an exceptional analysis of the writings of Frederick Douglass and was brilliant enough to recognize that not much has changed since Douglass made those assessments, and not only has she been terrorized, outcast and unduly punished by a racially based caste system of injustice, but deliberate road blocks have been put in place by malicious acts such as not transferring her records, forcing her transfer in the first place and totally disrespecting she and her family.

    America is determined to totally destroy African-Americans by any means necessary, but it must be clear in understanding that cutting off its nose to spite its face is only going to come back to bring it down to its knees as a whole, for what one affects us all. No man is an island entire unto himself as we are all interdependence on one another. This putrid hatred that these idiots are obsessed with spewing against the disenfranchised, will creep back upon them sooner than they think. America, built by blacks who get the least benefits of citizenship of anyone here, is not the invulnerable non-black paradise the delusional think it is. Karma is real. Even is blacks never wake up and free their minds, the sins of this racist regime will come back to haunt it eventually. Evil has its rewards, but its not always a pretty picture.

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