Kevin Brown's 11-year-old biracial son Kaden recently returned from school in a distraught state. Kaden told his father that his Language Arts teacher had noticed his curly hair and asked something he had never heard before: “Are you a mutt?”
Brown says that his son didn't understand the comment, but that another student and the teacher then explained that they were asking if Kaden was “mixed with other races.”
Outraged, Brown took to Facebook to call out the teacher by name and ask others to call the school to complain.
Brown wrote on Facebook:
"This is my beautiful, smart, joyful 11 year old biracial son Kaden... on October 12, 2016 at Wolfe Middle School in Center Line, Michigan his teacher (a white middle age woman), his educator look at his beautiful curly hair and asked my son, 'Are You A Mutt?'"
"Not understanding the question my son said he didn't know what that was. At that another student and the white teacher told him when your mixed with other races (ethnicities)."
"This left my son, my heart and joy feeling like he meant nothing, that he was less than nothing.. .he even went home and asked his mother 'why cant I be all white,' he wants to disown his African American heritage for his mothers German, Italian, Irish heritage (guess his mom is a Mutt too)!!!!"
"This teacher made my son feel dirty, calling him a mutt, a dog with no identity who doesn't belong. I AM OUTRAGED!!! This racist behavior should not be allowed in our schools, our children should never be faced with this BS, especially in the classroom from people that we (parents) entrust our children's protection."
"This teacher must be fired, never allowed to work with children ever again."
"Pass this along, take pictures holding up the same sign that my beautiful son is holding up... this can not be tolerated... I am tired of the hate, tired of the affliction and pissed off that my innocent child has become just another victim to racism in this county..."
"Please share, please comment, please protest...let my son know he is loved and special.....light up the darkness!!!"
"Support 4 Kaden"
"Fire Ms. Desmet"
"I AM NOT A MUTT!!!!"
Brown also included the telephone number for the school in his Facebook post.
Andrew S. McKinnon, assistant superintendent for human resources at the school, told WJBK that the school is currently investigating the alleged incident, but declined to discuss specifics.
"I can tell you that she is quite upset as the student is quite upset about the whole situation. Nobody likes to be in this position. None of the actors in this, I'm sure, are happy to be in this position."
Kaden also spoke to WJBK, telling them that he'd also been called the n-word at school before.
"I don't really want to be two different races now, because people ask me if I'm adopted because I'm mixed."