Some parents in the Inland Empire are taking legal action against the Upland Unified School District after racist drawings were allegedly given to a Black student by a sixth grader at Pepper Tree Elementary School.
One of the drawings states “You’re my favorite monkey,” while another reads “To my favorite cotton picker.”
The mother of the student who received these drawings, Marlene Reynoso, told KTLA she pulled her daughter from the school after continued harassment from fellow students and, what she says, has been little action from the Upland Unified School District.
At a Monday news conference, more details of the legal action were released, which call for the attorney general to begin a formal investigation into the school, as well as the removal of Pepper Tree Elementary’s assistant principal and a teacher.
Parents are also claiming that little action was taken by the Upland Unified School District and that the district’s response should have been much timelier.
“The Upland Unified School District and Pepper Tree Elementary School will now have to face the consequences of their failure,” Lawyer James Bryant, with the Cochran Law Firm, said at Monday’s news conference.
“Our lack of communication from the principal, administration and really no communication…and that’s kind of how we got to this point,” Reynoso said at the news conference.
The district says it has a strict zero tolerance policy on any type of hate speech or harassment, saying an investigation took place immediately.