SOUTHLAKE, Texas - Many people still have questions and are demanding answers about a racially offensive video posted online by high school students in Southlake.
The Carroll Independent School District held an unusual Friday morning meeting about the controversy. Trustees said the video made such a commotion and stir that they wanted to respond to it.
The video was reportedly made off campus and then posted on social media over the weekend. A group of Southlake teens could be heard singing the “N” word.
FOX 4 has chosen not to show the video because of its contents and because students are involved. It has also been removed from websites.
Members of the public were invited to share their comments. Normally during special meetings, the public is not allowed to comment. But in this case, trustees said they wanted to hear from the community.
Parent after parent stood up to speak, many getting very emotional. They came with experiences that many said, frankly, they had kept quiet for too long.
“Something has to change,” said Carroll ISD parent Robin Cornish. “You can’t sweep this under the carpet anymore. You have to address this issue of racism and intolerance in this community.”
Prominent names showed up for the meeting. There was former NBA star Jermaine O’Neal and former Rangers pitcher Ken Hill. His son was Carroll’s first black quarterback who later went on to play for TCU and A&M.
“As he was coming up through the ranks, he kept hearing whispers: ‘Never be a black quarterback. Never be a black quarterback.’ Well, there was,” said parent Laurie Hill.
The school board says this is a conversation that won’t end there.
“We’re better than this. I don’t have hate,” said Carroll ISD School Board President Sheri Mills. “And this was hard to hear. Even though those are not my kids in the video, all 8,000 are our kids. You don’t want to hear things like this. So tough to hear.”
The school board took no action on Friday, but there was a steady cry for change.
“When you can sit down and have the uncomfortable conversation, it’s the only way you ever going to get past these types of incidents,” one parent said.
Carroll ISD sent a letter out to parents saying it is disappointed something involving a racial slur was made and that behavior promoting racism will not be tolerated. The students who made the video are expected to be disciplined for violating the school code of conduct.
Mills says although nothing specific has been laid out, there will be changes in teacher and student training, policy changes and changes in the student code of conduct.