Mother calls gun picture in homework assignment 'unacceptable'

Published On: Mar 06 2013 10:20:14 AM HST   Updated On: Mar 06 2013 05:55:55 PM HST

Shantria Smith didn't know what to think about the homework assignment her 6-year-old son brought home from school Monday night.

The worksheet from Palmview Elementary has pictures and letters for kindergarten students to add to unfinished words.

But one of the pictures is of a realistic-looking semi-automatic handgun.

"The gun was a live picture of a gun, and the other pictures were like cartoon pictures," Smith said. "That's very unacceptable. I mean, you're teaching them to have fun with a gun, bun, etc., instead of teaching them the seriousness of the gun."

When school ends, Smith's son goes to aftercare at the Children in the Spirit Preparatory School.

A teacher there saw the worksheet when the boy pulled out his homework.

"My immediate thought was total shock," said Dalia Tepper.

Tepper said she grabbed the worksheet before he started his homework.

Smith said the topic of guns really hits home.

"My thoughts were, first of all, my son's father was killed by a gun and that could have traumatized him or any other kids who have witnessed some drama or violence pertaining to a gun," Smith said.

Tracy Clark, spokeswoman for Broward County Public Schools, issued the following statement Tuesday afternoon:

"The district and the school's administration agree that the illustration on the homework assignment was inappropriate. The school's administrators are taking steps to ensure that teachers create, utilize and provide assignments that are appropriate. This is an isolated case. Although the teacher's actions were well intended to meet the instructional objectives, the activity presented was inappropriate for students and not part of the approved curriculum. We thank the parent and community for bringing this to our attention."


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