Seventh-graders' parents upset over rap lyric homework assignment

Posted at 4:22 AM, Sep 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-11 00:26:07-04

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Rap lyrics referencing sex, drugs and "a good day" have some parents of Tucson Unified School District students questioning the educational value of a homework assignment.

Some seventh grade students at Utterback Middle School shared the lesson with their parents Thursday, Sept. 6. It asks students to evaluate theme in the lyrics of Ice Cube's "It Was a Good Day."

"What teacher would think this is okay to send home with their students?" asked one parent in a social media post. The mother, asking to remain anonymous, said the lyrics and content of the song seemed inappropriate for a school assignment.

Ashanti Holmes, who was picking up her daughter after school Monday, said she was unsure about the choice of song but she understood an educator's desire to connect with students.

Holmes said the teacher in question is popular with most students and is one of her daughter's favorites.

The school principal and a TUSD administrator are investigating the situation, according to a statement from the district's communications team.

"The Tucson Unified School District is aware of the situation. Assistant Superintendent Richard Sanchez and Utterback Middle School Principal Ms. Sanders are addressing the issue with the teacher in question and making sure the district follows all Due Process procedures outlined for our employees.We have been informed that the students were learning about “Theme” and were provided lyrics from various songs as part of the assignment.As this relates to a personnel issue, we do want to ensure you it is being addressed. However, per employee rights, we cannot provide further details."

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