GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Officials with Grand Prairie ISD have decided to remove a newsletter photo of teachers wearing “Chucks & Pearls” attire on Inauguration Day due to complaints from some staff members.
The famed “Chucks & Pearls” were seen across the nation on Wednesday, Jan. 20, as Americans celebrated Kamala Harris’ historic accomplishment of becoming the first woman vice president, as well as the first woman of color.
In Grand Prairie ISD’s daily digital newsletter, a photo was shared of teachers with the attire. However, the district said some staff members saw the photo as violating “political neutrality.”
The district’s superintendent, Linda Ellis, sent a letter to all staff members on Friday, saying the photo “sparked discussion and disappointment.”
“As part of what we do on a routine basis, a message was shared with staff earlier this year that while teaching it is critical that we remain politically neutral. I think we can all agree on that. Where the conflict arose is when we put a picture in the daily message that some staff construed as political,” Ellis said in the letter.
Ellis said some staff members claimed district officials also broke policy regarding “political neutrality” when they allowed the photo to be shared.
“The picture was intended to celebrate a history making day,” Ellis said.
In reference to an apology sent to staff on Thursday, Ellis added: “The apology the following day was not intended to take away from history or from the picture, but rather to apologize for the impression of some that staff at central office chose to include the picture and did not adhere to political neutrality.”
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