San Antonio Student Singled Out As “Mexican”
When high school senior Augustine Ortiz went to English class May 6, he didn’t realize he would become the object of the lesson.
His teacher – as yet unnamed by the San Antonio Independent School District – allegedly instructed Ortiz to sit in the front row as she began a discussion of immigration and SB 1070 recently signed into law in Arizona. Ortiz, clad in a Mexican soccer team jersey, complied with the request from one of his favorite teachers. What followed was shocking.
The teacher singled out Ortiz several times while making specific slurs against Mexicans and immigration. She is reported to have said that “Mexicans expect handouts” and America is going to be “the United States of Mexico.” She repeatedly pointed at Ortiz while making these statements.
Ortiz lodged a complaint with the vice-principal but no action was taken until the matter reached the principal’s attention on the following Monday even though another student corroborated Ortiz’s version of the events. The teacher has been placed on administrative leave during the investigation into the incident.
The teacher has apologized privately to Ortiz; neither he nor his parents want her fired. The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) favors a public apology delivered over the school’s public address system. Ortiz states that he will be “standing up for what [he] believes in” because that’s exactly what his teacher taught him to do.
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