- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 21, 2015

An Indiana public school district is canceling a series of college field trips that were exclusively for black third-graders following complaints.

On Monday afternoon, a spokeswoman for South Bend Community School Corp. said two of the field trips scheduled for early this week had been postponed while the district considers ways to restructure them, South BendTribunereported.

The move comes after several parents complained following the first excursion of the program, which began last week with a trip to Ivy Tech Community College, Campus Reform reported. Parents told a local ABC affiliate that they believed the field trips were racist and discriminatory since non-black students were not invited.

“It creates a double standard,” said parent Kelley Garing. “I just think it breeds intolerance and creates misunderstandings.”

Dr. G. David Moss, the director for the African-American student-parent services with the district, said he created the program in order to help black children succeed academically.

“I want these third-graders to have the opportunity to think of themselves as college students,” he told the ABC affiliate.

But district spokeswoman Sue Coney said that the field trips had not been vetted by Superintendent Carole Schmidt, as is required before a program can begin, South BendTribune reported.

At Monday’s board meeting, Ms. Schmidt read a short statement saying that she had reviewed the issue and decided that the field trips will be available to all students, regardless of race, the Tribune reported.

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