Teacher suspended in US for calling Muslim student a ‘raghead Taliban’

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In another apparent case of racism in America, a teacher was suspended in Florida, USA, for five days after she called her Muslim student a ‘raghead Taliban’.

Maria Valdes, a French teacher, was suspended by the school administration after she called her 14 year-old student of Lebanese descendent Deyab Houssein Wardani a ‘raghead Taliban’. She made the comment when Deyab entered the class wearing a hoodie.

The subsequent administrative complaint alleged that this was not the first transgression, having addressed the student as a Taliban during class at least once while asking him asking him a question saying “Okay the Taliban, what is the answer?”

Valdes, a teacher at the Cypress Bay High School, would often refer to Deyab as ‘Taliban’ or ‘Terrorista’ which means terrorist in Spanish.

“I would not expect this from a teacher, teachers are supposed to set an example for their students,” said Deyab.

Decrying the stereotyping of Muslims as terrorists, he said “It is very sad that people still think like that, that all Muslims are your average daily terrorist.”

Besides five days suspension without pay, Valdes will also have to undergo a diversity training programme.

However, Deyab’s father Youssef Wardani thinks that the five day suspension tantamount to ‘vacation’. The teacher should have been suspended for at least without pay – if not fired.

A message posted on a page set up by the Wardani on Facebook, ‘Our son is NOT a “Rag Head Taliban”’, reads that the message sent by the administration to all the bad teachers out there is clear, “Do whatever you want and get a vacation.”

Calling support from all other parents and teachers, the family urged them to send ‘a different message’ to the board for the sake of their children, adding that “Otherwise the next nationality and religion will be yours.”

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