‘We can always improve’ Babcock Neighborhood School responds to lawsuits; read full statement

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discrimination lawsuit

Three families have now filed lawsuits against Babcock Neighborhood School alleging their child was subjected to harassment, racial discrimination, exclusion and bullying on a consistent basis. Now, the school is responding to those lawsuits.

The “n-word,” “cotton picker,” “monkey,” and much more. These words were allegedly used to torment multiple bi-racial students at the school, and now Shannon Treece, the Executive Director for the school issued the following statement. WINK is sharing it in its entirety.

The Babcock Schools administration and staff take all complaints of discrimination, harassment and bullying very seriously. While it is our policy not to comment on investigations or the discipline of our students, we can confirm a thorough investigation was conducted surrounding this incident and significant action was taken in line with our policies. We recognize that we can always improve. We are reviewing our procedures to identify opportunities with the aim of continuing to offer the best support to all of our students. We remain committed to open and transparent dialogue with our community and will continue to provide updates whenever possible. 
In recent days, Babcock Schools has made multiple attempts to engage with Mr. Muwakkil and the Lee County NAACP but those attempts have been ignored to date. We are continuing to offer and encourage open lines of communication with the Lee County NAACP and as we work with our staff, students and parents on strengthening our procedures and reaffirming our school values. 
“On September 27th, Babcock Schools offered via telephone to Mr. Muwakkil and in writing to meet with the NAACP. The proposed meeting included the School’s Principal and Governing Board chair. They did not respond,” said Attorney Shawn Arnold, who is representing the Babcock Schools. 
“The school executive director had multiple conversations with a representative of the Babcock Diversity Crew, which includes representatives of the NAACP. In addition, a meeting was set for October 17th which was cancelled by the Babcock Diversity Crew and has not been rescheduled. Babcock Schools remains ready, willing, and able to meet with the NAACP,” Mr. Arnold added.
“We remain open to engaging in meaningful discussion with any concerned students, staff or community members,” said Shannon Treece, Executive Director of the Babcock Schools. 
“We are dedicated to educating students in an environment that is respectful and empathetic to all individuals. And our educators take great pride in providing a safe space for our students to learn, grow, and expand their minds and opportunities. Our commitment has always been to our core values of building positive and supportive relationships within our school and to fostering a safe and inclusive environment for all of our students. We know there is still more work to be done within our community to uphold these values,” she added.
Again, thanks for reaching out. 
Kind regards, 
Mrs. Shannon Treece

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