CHANNELVIEW, Texas (CBS News) — Seventh-grader Lizeth Villanueva was shocked as she looked down at the disturbing “honor” listed on a certificate she received at a mock awards ceremony at school last week.
“Most likely to be a terrorist,” the certificate reads, along with her name in capital letters.
Several teachers, who held the ceremony at Anthony Aguirre Junior High in Channelview, Texas, laughed as she picked up the “award.” Villanueva told CBS affiliate KHOU-TV the teacher who signed it considered it a “joke.”
But to Villanueva, the certificate was no joke.
“She said that some people might get offended, but she doesn’t really care about our feelings,” Lizeth said. “She was laughing about it.”
Villanueva’s mom, Ena Hernandez, was appalled when her daughter came home with the paper certificate.
“I read it twice. I’m like, ‘What is this?!'” she said. “It doesn’t look good at all, especially coming from a teacher, a grown-up woman. It doesn’t look good because everything that’s going on right now.”
The Channelview Independent School District told CBS News the teachers involved are being disciplined “according to district policy,” but would not elaborate, as the incident is still under investigation.
“The Channelview ISD Administration would like to apologize for the insensitive and offensive fake mock awards that were given to students in a classroom,” the school district said in an emailed statement. “Channelview ISD would like to assure all students, parents and community members that these award statements and ideals are not representative of the district’s vision, mission and educational goals for our students.”
Villanueva, who hasn’t been back to class since receiving the certificate, hopes the school district will take further action against the teacher.
“[She should] get fired, at least, or something,” she said.
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