Toronto Teacher Wears Blackface to School Because “It Looked Cool”
On Friday, October 29, 2021, a white teacher walked into a Toronto classroom wearing blackface. His students sat stunned, in shock and discomfort. When students questioned what he was doing, the teacher said “it looked cool.”
The teacher remained in blackface for the entire 75-minute class. At an assembly later that day, he was still in blackface. Students reported that not a single teacher or adult confronted or approached the teacher.
Parkdale Collegiate in Toronto’s west end has put the teacher on “home assignment.” But that was after he spent the day interacting with other teachers and adults. Until he was finally asked to wash off the facial assault.
In 2018 the Canadian Public Health Association declared racism a public health issue. In doing so they noted racism leads to poorer health and economic outcomes.
Parkdale’s principal is now performing damage control. She’s denounced the teacher’s actions as contrary to the school’s and the board’s code of conduct.
Then why wasn’t he confronted earlier? Why was he allowed to continue walking around in blackface contrary to the school’s policies?
Why didn’t a single adult or teacher say anything despite interacting with him? Why were Black students forced to endure this assault for any part of their school day?
Parents, Black and white have spoken up against this latest act of violence against Black students. After being informed by their children. Not the school.
They have drafted a petition demanding greater transparency in teacher hiring and they want to help students “report racist and hateful incidents.” The parents may not be aware the board already has an online portal to report these offences.
The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) has Operational Procedure PR728.
It’s their policy for “Reporting And Responding To Racism And Hate Incidents Involving Or Impacting Students In Schools.” In this 2019 report, the TDSB states they have an online portal to report racism.