A junior high Spanish teacher from the Bronx, NY is claiming she was fired over the misunderstanding of the word “negro.” In March 2012, 65 year old Petrona Smith, an untenured black instructor, says while teaching her students the various colors in Spanish, “negro” naturally came up since it describes “black.” According to The New York Post, a seventh grader, believing it to be racist, reported Smith to school officials.
The incident eventually led to Smith’s termination from P.S. 211, which happens to be a bilingual school. She is also accused of verbally abusing her students although she claims the opposite.
“They haven’t even accounted for how absurd it is for someone who’s black to be using a racial slur to a student,” says her attorney Shaun Reid.
Smith, who has remained unemployed since, is filing a lawsuit against New York City.
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