Parents Upset Over New Case of Math Homework Referencing Slavery

Updated: Wednesday, 21 Mar 2012, 12:24 PM EDT
Published : Tuesday, 20 Mar 2012, 5:27 PM EDT

Aungelique Proctor

Aungelique Proctor



A Clayton County parent is upset after he says his son was given a math homework assignment that referenced slavery.

Christopher Jackson said his 9-year-old son’s homework assignment  from a class at James A. Jackson Elementary School contained an extra-credit question that read, “A plantation owner had 100 slaves. If three-fifths of them are counted for representation, how many slaves will be counted?”

In January, some Gwinnett County parents became upset over a third-grade math assignment that contained multiple references to slavery. One teacher later resigned over that controversy. The story received nationwide attention.

Jackson’s son, Chris, said he didn’t want to answer the question.

“Us blacks, we had to do slavery. Most of the whites, they were free and they owned us. We were treated as property,” said Chris Jackson.

Several parents told FOX 5 that they felt the question was inappropriate.

“I don’t what to say. I believe that slavery is still in Georgia. I didn’t know that it would go this far. I think they need to resign or something,” said April Thurman.

Jackson said he has given the teacher, who is an African-American male, the benefit of the doubt.

“I think the teacher, basically, didn’t read over the homework before he sent it out. He just got the paperwork and just sent it to the kids,” said Jackson.

A Clayton County Public Schools representative said that 139 students received the homework assignment. It was given out by fourth-grade teachers. The spokesperson said it was approved material that was designed to cross several subjects, including social studies and math. There will be no punishment or reprimand to the teachers involved, according to the spokesperson.

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