Racial slurs put Orlando private school in national spotlight

The First Academy school officials acknowledge more work needs to be done

By Nadeen Yanes - Reporter

ORLANDO, Fla. - It's a post filled with racial slurs, now filling up news feeds across the nation and putting a spotlight on a Christian private school right here in Orlando, prompting school officials to respond.

"As you may have seen on social media outlets over these past few days, our school has experienced an incident that has caused pain to all involved," said The First Academy's President, Dr. Steve Whitaker in a statement Wednesday. 

The statement was released after the selfie with the slurs, which school officials say was posted back in June, went viral this week.

It's a post parents are just now learning about.

"It does shock me," said First Academy father Tony Guerra. "If I heard my daughter saying something like that she would probably never say it again. She would get reprimanded at home."

But dad Gene Collins says he needs to know more about it.

"I have to look at things further before I can comment on one little post, but as far as I'm concerned the school as far as the racial diversity and racial awareness, it's fine," he said. "All I know the school itself, as far as I'm concerned has been doing a fantastic job."

However, Wednesday school officials did acknowledge more work needs to be done.

"As we reflect on this situation, we have realized there is much more work to do in the area of racial reconciliation that we must take ownership of," wrote Dr. Whitaker in a statement to parents. "Have we been doing enough? The answer is no. However, we will continue to learn from this experience and are committed to the necessary and important work to grow as a school community in this area of racial reconciliation."

In the first of two statements released by the school, they say the students who posted this seemed remorseful when confronted about the post and add they have taken disciplinary action, but would not elaborate further to News 6 on what that action was, only referring us back to their statements.

You can read them in full here: 

http://thefirstacademy.org/blog/a-statement-from-dr-steve-whitaker-head-of-school/

http://thefirstacademy.org/blog/statement-on-race-relations/

 

Copyright 2016 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.