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CCSD trustee hosts panel discussion on racism, bullying in schools

Posted at 11:46 PM, May 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-09 02:56:39-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A few dozen parents crowded into the Chaparral High School library for a panel discussion about racism and bullying Wednesday evening.

The loose format allowed parents to ask questions and it was made clear that many also wanted immediate answers.

The meeting was just one of a few held in recent weeks after two students were arrested for making threats against black students at Arbor View High School in March.

RELATED: Additional student cited after threats made against Arbor View High School students

Then, during a board meeting to discuss those threats district trustee Danielle Ford further inflamed racial tensions when she referred to black students as "colored."

RELATED: Racial tensions further inflamed after CCSD trustee Danielle Ford uses racially insensitive language

Suyunn Davis has several grandchildren who attend CCSD schools.

"I believe tonight was a beginning," she said.

One of her children attends Arbor View HS. She said he faces some of the same prejudices his father faced as a student nearly 30 years ago.

"It is very disheartening for my grandson to be at a school where the issue is returning, but I can't say it's returning because I don't believe it ever went anywhere," she said.

"I think what I heard was lip service," said Tina Torres. "We want action."

Torres' nephew is also a student at Arbor View.

"I don't know what the answer is, to be honest. There are too many kids getting hurt," she said.

District G Trustee Linda Cavazos hosted the panel.

"I am hoping that at least to a certain extent, even at the jumping off point, that people will feel that their voices matter and that we are listening to them," Cavazos said.

Cavazos and Assistant Superintendent Dr. Tammy Malich both assured parents the district is hearing the criticism but needs time to implement changes.

"I think everything has to start somewhere, but we have to make sure that's not just what it does, start," said Davis. "We have to make sure that things are accomplished."