What would a “mascot” for Nazis look like?
A giant fuzzy bird giving the “Heil, Hitler” salute?
A tiger doing a goofy goosestep?
A teacher at Shiloh Middle School in Snellville, Georgia angered parents this week by giving her students an unusual homework assignment.
She asked them to “think about all of the information that you have learned about Hitler and the Nazi party” and create a mascot for it, Fox 5 Atlanta reported.
In Gwinnett County Schools, kids learn about Nazism, the Holocaust and propaganda in sixth-grade.
Local media published the wording of the teacher’s assignment:
“The year is 1935 and you have been tasked with creating a mascot to represent the Nazi party at its political rallies. Think about all of the information you have learned about Hitler and the Nazi party. You will create a COLORFUL illustration of the mascot. Give the mascot a NAME. You will also write an explanation as to why the mascot was chosen to represent the Nazi party.”
The school district, in a statement on Thursday, distanced itself from the lesson plan, calling it inappropriate. It was not approved by the school’s social studies department and school officials are talking to the teacher about it, the statement said.
The assignment was given to students on Monday, district spokeswoman Sloan Roach told the newspaper.
“When you talk about mascots, mascots are supposed to be happy, to promote something, a positive representation like UGA so really, (we’re) doing a Nazi party mascot? What are we celebrating?” concerned mom Jamie Brown told Fox 5.
“I just don’t think, right now, at this time and place in America this is the time for that. We need to start looking at the things that bring us together and stop looking at things that separate us as a human race.”
When Toyka Walker’s daughter told her about the assignment, “I thought she was playing,” Walker told WSB.
Mom Mindy Lopes was confused, too, when her son showed her the assignment. She told WSB she wants her son to understand history. But creating a Nazi mascot?
“My kids are very mature, so there are some things they can learn, but it depends on how they’re being taught about history and stuff,” Lopes said.