© 2024 WFAE

Mailing Address:
8801 J.M. Keynes Dr. Ste. 91
Charlotte NC 28262
Tax ID: 56-1803808
90.7 Charlotte 93.7 Southern Pines 90.3 Hickory 106.1 Laurinburg
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Union County School System Apologizes For Racist Hashtags

Waxhaw Elementary School is seen in Union County east of Charlotte.
Waxhaw Elementary/Union County Schools
Waxhaw Elementary School is seen in Union County east of Charlotte.

WAXHAW — School officials in North Carolina's Union County have apologized after racist hashtags were displayed on a classroom Twitter wall as part of a Civil War assignment for fourth graders.

Kimberly Morrison-Hansley, a member of the Union County NAACP chapter, toldthe Charlotte Observer that the students at the Waxhaw Elementary School were assigned to write tweets and hashtags that people living in North Carolina during the Civil War might have written if Twitter existed during that time period. Students came up with hashtags such as “Slavery for Life," according to a photo of the Twitter wall in a now-deleted post on the school Facebook page, WJZY-TV reported.

“@dontStopSlavery," you may not agree with slavery but I do and I'm honest about it” read a post on the Twitter wall.

“It should be deeply disturbing to anyone,” said Morrison-Hansley, who called the assignment inappropriate for children so young.

In its statement apologizing for the hashtags, the Union County Schools said “this type of assignment is unacceptable,” according to a copy of the statement provided to the Observer by Morrison-Hansley.

"District administrators are taking this matter very seriously and met with the entire Waxhaw Elementary staff,” the statement said.

It also said the school system is developing training sessions for all employees to address diversity, equity and inclusion.

“We are committed to working with teachers to discuss best practices for instruction,” the statement said.

Morrison-Hansley, a former member of the county Board of Education and the first Black woman elected to the board, said the statement is inadequate. She said the superintendent and individual board members should face the public on YouTube and apologize themselves.

Sign up for our daily headlines newsletter

Select Your Email Format

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.