- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 15, 2018

A Georgia school district is investigating after a 7-year-old student, “the only white girl in her class,” according to her father, was cast to play a segregationist in a school play.

In a video of the play, 7-year-old Anastasia Bertram, playing the part of a segregationist, yelled at a group of black children to “go away, you don’t belong here!” She then marched with a sign that read, “Go home,” on one side and “Cursed is the man who integrates” on the other, ABC-affiliated WSB-TV reported.

Douglas County School District said it is investigating the March 2 incident at Burnett Elementary School in Douglasville, after the girl’s parents complained that they were never notified about their daughter’s involvement in the play, and that they had no idea the nature of her role until they were sitting in the audience.

The Bertrams told WSB-TV that Anastasia’s teacher later explained to them that their daughter had volunteered for the part after another student struggled to learn the lines and follow directions.

“She’s 7!” Anastasia’s mother, Amber, told WSB-TV. “And you put her onstage and made her think what she was doing was OK? That’s not OK.”

“Other parents started looking at me,” the girl’s father, Heath, told the Daily Mail. “She is the only white girl in her class, and one of the very few in the whole school.”

“Giving her the position of a white supremacist at the age of 7 was unacceptable,” he said.

The Bertrams said they decided to pull both their daughters out of the school following the incident. Their transfer was approved by the district and they will start at a different school Friday, the Daily Mail reported.

“We did not feel they could stay in an environment like that,” Mr. Bertram said.

Douglas County School District Superintendent Trent North apologized to the family in a voicemail.

“I am calling to apologize. I was unaware of the treatment of your daughter,” Mr. North said, WSB-TV reported.

The Bertrams said they believed the apology was disingenuous.

“Only because he was informed we were talking with you and that this was gonna go on the air and he didn’t want it on the air,” Mrs. Bertram said.

District spokeswoman Portia Lake told WSB-TV that an investigation into the incident had been launched.

“They were portraying one moment in history, one small, two-second moment in history. It may not be appropriate but it happened,” Ms. Lake said.

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