Psst, Teachers: Don’t Give Kids ‘Most Likely To Be A Terrorist’ Awards

‘Most Likely To Blend In With White People’ is off limits, too

Another teacher has learned the hard way that distributing end of year awards based on stereotypes and prejudice can cost you your job. After giving one girl a “Most Likely to Become a Terrorist” certificate and giving another a “Most Likely to Blend in With White People” certificate educator Stacy Lockett no longer has a teaching position with the Channelview Independent School District in Channelview, Texas.

“We have concluded our investigation and the teacher responsible is no longer employed by the district," a spokesperson for the Channelview Independent School District in Channelview, a suburb of Houston, said in a statement on Tuesday.

[quote position="left" is_quote="true"]I couldn't believe a teacher could be that bold.[/quote]

The awards were handed out in late May in Lockett’s seventh-grade classroom at Lance Cpl. Anthony Aguirre Junior High School. Lizeth Villanueva, the 13-year-old who received the terrorist certificate told CNN affiliate KPRC that the teacher said the awards were a joke but they “might hurt feelings.” But Villanueva didn’t think it was funny. "I do not feel comfortable with this... I do not feel comfortable being in the same classroom with [the teacher],” she said.

Lauren Easton, whose little sister Sydney Caesar received the white people award told CNN that her "initial reaction was shock" and “I couldn't believe a teacher could be that bold."

And those two awards weren’t the only ones to cross the line. Villanueva said one student got a “Most Likely to Cry About Every Little Thing” and another was handed a “Most Likely to Become Homeless in Guatemala” certificate. Word of the awards spread across the Houston suburb, and outraged parents and community members demanded that the district take action.

This controversy in Clearview comes on the heels of two teachers in suburban Atlanta giving a 14-year-old girl with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder a trophy with the words “Most Likely to Not Pay Attention” written on it. After an investigation, the school district said those teachers would not be returning to their positions.

You have to wonder what exactly is going through the mind of a teacher when they decide it might be a good idea to give out a “Most Likely to Become a Terrorist” certificate—and to do it at a time when bullying is so pervasive in America’s schools, that 160,000 students stay home every day because they’re afraid of being harassed. Educators have clamored for more trainings and resources to help them with the problem, and in 2014, the federal government stepped up and created a free online anti-harassment toolkit for schools. But what’s clear from these offensive awards is that all the digital tools and in-person workshops in the world won’t stop students from harassing each other as long as teachers are the ones doing the bullying.


September 20th marks the beginning of a pivotal push for the future of our planet. The Global Climate Strike will set the stage for the United Nations Climate Action Summit, where more than 60 nations are expected to build upon their commitment to 2015's Paris Agreement for combating climate change.

Millions of people are expected to take part in an estimated 4,000 events across 130 countries.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
via Apple

When the iPhone 11 debuted on September 10, it was met with less enthusiasm than the usual iPhone release. A lot of techies are holding off purchasing the latest gadget until Apple releases a phone with 5G technology.

Major US phone carriers have yet to build out the infrastructure necessary to provide a consistent 5G experience, so Apple didn't feel it necessary to integrate the technology into its latest iPhone.

A dramatic new feature on the iPhone 11 Pro is its three camera lenses. The three lenses give users the the original wide, plus ultrawide and telephoto options.

Keep Reading Show less
via I love butter / Flickr

We often dismiss our dreams as nonsensical dispatches from the mind while we're deep asleep. But recent research proves that our dreams can definitely affect our waking lives.

People often dream about their significant others and studies show it actually affects how we behave towads them the next day.

"A lot of people don't pay attention to their dreams and are unaware of the impact they have on their state of mind," said Dylan Selterman, psychology lecturer at the University of Maryland, says according to The Huffington Post. "Now we have evidence that there is this association."

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Thomas Kelley on Unsplash

It's fun to go to a party, talk to strangers, and try to guess where they're from just by their accents and use of language. It's called 'soda' on the East Coast and 'pop' in the Midwest, right? Well, it looks like a new study has been able to determine where a Humpback whale has been and who he's been hanging out with during his awesome travels just from his song.

Keep Reading Show less

There is no shortage of proposals from the, um, what's the word for it… huge, group of Democratic presidential candidates this year. But one may stand out from the pack as being not just bold but also necessary; during a CNN town hall about climate change Andrew Yang proposed a "green amendment" to the constitution.

Keep Reading Show less