An elementary school will no longer teach the Nazi salute during historical role play exercises after an 11-year-old student complained.
One of the student’s parents, Keith Gamble, shared screenshots of an email his partner sent McFadden School of Excellence in Murfreesboro, Tennessee detailing the extent of students’ school sanctioned Nazi roleplay.
Mr Gamble’s screenshots explain that his daughter’s fifth grade teacher assigned projects to the class in a segment called “Living History” that involved teaching students the Nazi salute, and one child portraying Adolf Hitler in a presentation.
According to Mr Gamble, these actions upset his daughter, who voiced her concern during the lesson and asked her schoolmates to stop, shouting “put your hands down.”
He writes that his daughter was removed from the classroom and sent to the principal’s office for being “disrespectful with her tone and body language to teachers.”
Students later began saluting each other as Nazis on the school’s playground and during classes for fun.
She was reportedly given an opportunity by her teacher to voice her opinion, and then told not to bring it up again.
Later, the child who played Hitler was awarded a “McTony,” an award for the best performance during the Living History presentations. At least four students gave a Nazi salute to the child as he received his award during an assembly.
The communications for Rutherford County Schools, where McFadden school is located, told HuffPost“the principal held a meeting with all fifth-graders about what had happened and to put a stop to any further instances.”
He said that the school will no longer teach the required fifth grade curriculum through the Living History model, thereby ending the dressing as Hitler and learning to Sieg Heil.
Murfreesboro was home to an attempted neo-Nazi rally in October 2017, shortly after the successful white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in which a white nationalist killed activist Heather Heyer by running her over with his car.
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The white nationalists cancelled the rally after thousands showed up in protest. It followed a more successful rally in a nearby town, Shelbyville, that morning, which was also met with protesters.
The McFadden School has not responded to request for comment on the Living History incident.