Local News


Clark County School District trustee apologizes on Facebook for 'colored' comment

Posted at 6:34 PM, Apr 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-14 15:14:17-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — UPDATE APRIL 14: Danielle Ford has now apologized on Facebook for using the word "colored" during a board meeting.

A day after igniting an already tense school board meeting by using an outdated racial term, Trustee Danielle Ford was not available for interviews.

Ford spending the day at a previously scheduled school board retreat just hours after some of those same board members had to let her know her use of the term was inappropriate.

"There are two different problems we are experiencing right now. One is safety protocols and other is the safety of "colored" students in general," Ford said during Thursday's meeting.

It took Trustee Danielle Ford ten seconds to realize her mistake with the help of her fellow trustees and murmurs from the audience.

Those murmurs quickly turning to shouts after Ford's first apology.

"I am so sorry for saying that," Ford said.

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

Several parents were at the meeting to get answers about the way recent racist threats were handled at Arbor View High School.

Many walked out of the meeting even more outraged.

"She called us colored, which lets us know they need the training. The training, it needs to start at the top if the trustee is referring to us as colored," Akiko Cooks said.

Mujahid Ramadan praised the women for speaking up.

He does cultural and diversity training for Las Vegas police and other Clark County agencies.

"I am proud that those women stepped up and said this is a questionable statement you are making here and it is offensive because then it becomes a teachable moment," Ramadan said.

The imam says we will never know what is in the trustees' heart but says he was encouraged by the almost immediate apologies.

Ramadan says the next step is for Ford and CCSD as a whole to use it as a learning experience.

"This gives her an opportunity now to learn the experiences of other people and what their walk has been," Ramadan said.

Ford acknowledging that learning during the uncomfortable four-minute exchange.

"I think there are a lot of people who are in our district who are very much like me and don't necessarily know what we are doing wrong," Ford said.

Ramadan saying everyone has those unconscious biases, even acknowledging a couple of slips he has made himself in recent years and says everyone should try to learn from those experiences.

When it comes to Ford's comment Thursday, he said she should start by picking up a history book.

"That she study the history of America and study the history of race relations in America and specifically study the racism of America," Ramadan said.

When it comes to others learning more about hidden biases, Ramadan recommended "Blind Spot" by Mahzarin Banaji and Anthony Greenwald.

Late Friday night a statement from CCSD Trustee President Lola Brooks and the Board of School Trustees was shared on social media: