LUBBOCK, Texas — Racist bullying has been reported to the Laura Bush Middle School administration due to a recent Instagram page titled “LBMS Monkeys.” Parents said it was not the first case of racist behavior at school.
A group of Lubbock-Cooper ISD parents say their children have been teased because of their skin color, called racial slurs and worse.
“They’ve even gone so far as to hear a whipping sound on their phone as they walk past the kids and they’ll play it in their ear,” said parent Anthony Yharbrough, whose son attends LBMS.
But the breaking point was when the Instagram page surfaced. He posted photos of these black students and called them “monkeys”. Luckily, it was flagged and taken down on April 23.
LBMS manager Kyle Hendrix addressed the bullying on Wednesday.
“It’s appalling and disgusting,” he said. “This does not reflect my beliefs, the beliefs of Laura Bush Middle School or the beliefs of Lubbock Cooper ISD. When a situation comes to our attention, you know, we immediately go into an investigation, find out the facts and apply discipline appropriate if necessary.
He added that once the person responsible for creating the page is discovered, they will receive the maximum sentence available.
“We are known for being a pirate family and caring for each other,” he said. “I really take that to heart every day. I love all these children.”
However, parents of students who are bullied feel that not enough is being done to address the problem.
“There is no communication,” said mother Tracy Kemp. “And when I started reaching out to these other parents, all of our stories were the same.”
Shardae McGaha told KLBK News that she and her husband Jimmy had to chase the children off their property after hearing monkey noises from across their fence.
“I want them to be able to go to school and not have to worry about being bullied, called names, whipped in their ear,” she said. declared. “We want them to be able to focus on their next test or their next mission.”
Based on conversations they’ve shared with their children and others, they believe it’s the unfortunate culture floating around the entire district.
“We’re not saying everyone is racist, but we’re saying that racism is still alive,” McGaha explained.
In response to this statement, Hendrix said the school or the district should not be associated with this at all.
“Are we a perfect school or a perfect district? No, no one is,” Hendrix said. “We must always evolve and respond to needs as they arise. We love every child in this neighborhood. They are here to get an education and we want to do everything we can to support that.
Looking ahead, Lubbock-Cooper ISD said in a statement “we have planned professional development training for Laura Bush Middle School staff members and are in the process of seeking guest speakers to speak to the Laura Bush Middle School student body. Bush Middle School regarding issues of racial discrimination”.