Teacher Suspended For Assigning Lil Wayne Lyrics As Homework
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Boynton Beach, Fla. (CBS TAMPA) – A South Florida eighth-grade English teacher was suspended after assigning homework which asks students to examine explicit Lil Wayne lyrics for figurative language.
The Charter Schools of Boynton Beach confirmed that the teacher was suspended for three days after printing out and distributing lyrics to rapper Lil Wayne’s explicit song, “Six Foot Seven Foot,” WPTV reports. Parents in the community expressed outrage that the racial slurs and sexually-charged song lyrics were given to their children to “underline examples of figurative language.”
“This is crazy. They shouldn’t be giving this to kids in school,” parent Vanessa Guzman told WPTV. “Who in their right mind would give kids something like this?”
“6 Foot 7 Foot” is taken from New Orleans-born rapper Lil Wayne’s ninth studio album, “Tha Carter IV,” from 2011, although the song was officially released on iTunes in December 2010. The song features fellow hip-hop artist Cory Gunz, and uses audio samples from “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song”) by Harry Belafonte.
As of Feb. 4, the explicit version of the music video posted to YouTube had amassed over 75 million views.
The song features repeated use of multiple curse words, racial epithets, drug use, and violence.
“I’m uncomfortable reading any of this,” said Guzman.
The Charter Schools of Boynton Beach headmaster said the school policy is to use “G-rated material,” and that the material used in the homework assignment was no approved by the school.
“The lesson was for students to learn to identify literary devices. The teacher had already introduced Edgar Allen Poe and Shakespeare. Students were having difficulty grasping the concepts of literary devices such as: pun, simile, metaphor, so the teacher used colloquial material,” headmaster Wayne Owens told WPTV in a statement. “This material did not meet the school’s standards and was not approved. The teacher recognizes that it was totally inappropriate for a school assignment.”
Guzman said she understands and appreciates teachers thinking outside the box to encourage students to do their homework, but that this tactic “is not appropriate at all.”
“It’s telling the kids it’s okay to swear,” said Guzman.
School administrators cited that the teacher had an unblemished record before this incident.