In Black and White

March 02, 2007 1 min read

Sometimes education is uncomfortable. That’s what a group of middle-schoolers in Anderson, Indiana, found out when each student was tagged with a randomly assigned black or white sticker representing race as part of a Black History Month exercise. The students wearing black stickers were segregated into separate classes and had to use the “Colored” water fountain, which only dispensed warm water. The simulation included sessions where teachers and volunteers acted out some of the social scenarios that would have been commonplace before the civil rights era. “This would be pretty bad day in and day out, " said one 7th grader, who had a black sticker. “We hope some will realize that people died for them to have the rights they do today,” a school official said.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.