- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 6, 2017

A Florida middle school teacher has been fired after assigning students a survey containing dozens of hypothetical questions involving race, sexuality and religion, among other topics.

The Hernando County School District said Wednesday a newly hired teacher was recently terminated from her role after her students were asked to fill out a questionnaire titled: “How Comfortable Am I?”

“Please take some time to rate (indicate by a circle) the following statements on a scale of 1-4, with 1 being not comfortable at all to 4 being completely comfortable,” its instructions read.

“A friend invites you to go to a gay bar” and “Your new roommate is Jewish” are among two of the first scenarios presented to students. Other include “Your dentist is HIV positive” and “Your brother’s new girlfriend is a single mother on welfare.”

Karen Jordan, a public information officer for the school district, said the questionnaire was a supplemental assignment left for Fox Chapel Middle School students in a teacher’s absence.

“In no way, does this assignment meet the standards of appropriate instructional material. After being made aware of the survey, school administration began an investigation and took immediate disciplinary action,” she said in a statement.

The district did not identify the teacher at fault but said they had joined the Spring Hill school in January and was still under a probationary period at the time of termination.

A local NBC affiliate identified the teacher as Daryl Cox and said she did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Students and parents alike were equally perturbed by the peculiar assignment.

“I thought it was very inappropriate,” sixth-grade student Tori Drews told a local NBC affiliate after receiving the survey during a recent “Leader In Me” class. “I thought some of [the questions] were racist. I thought some of them were sexist. I thought it was completely intolerable.”

Parent Jennifer Block took particular umbrage with a question asking how comfortable one would be with a group of black men walking toward them on the street.

“That’s completely inappropriate,” she said. “In no world, whatsoever, is that OK to question a child on.”

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