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Posted: June 08, 2015

Teachers give Ghetto Classroom Awards to special needs students

Ghetto Classroom Awards were given out to students at Sulphur Springs Middle School in Texas.
@BET / Twitter
Ghetto Classroom Awards were given out to students at Sulphur Springs Middle School in Texas.

By Rick Couri

SULPHER SPRINGS, Tx —

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When Debra Jose saw the certificate her grandson brought home from school, she was shocked.

“Tears just started falling out of my eyes,” she said.

For the eighth year in a row, teachers at Sulphur Springs Middle School near Dallas handed out "Getto Classroom Awards," and her grandson was one of the recipients.

The teachers who handed out the award claimed they didn't know the term was offensive. To make matters worse, the awards were given to special needs students. 

KDFW identified the teachers as Stephanie Garner and Tim Couch. Family members think their kids are being made fun of, and the school is embarrassed. 

“It is not something SSISD is proud of," Sulphur Springs Superintendent Michael Lamb told CBS 11. “It is not acceptable. It is not anything we want to be a part of, and we are addressing it today.”

A two-hour meeting with the families of the students who were involved was reportedly held on Thursday. 

KTXA asked Lamb why it wasn’t stopped before this year.

“It’s something this teacher did for six years in a prior district,” he said. “It went unnoticed.”

That explanation isn’t sitting well with Debra. “You want the best for children,” she noted.  “Not just my grandchild, but every child.” 

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