Plano ISD announced Monday the creation of two new courses -- African American and Mexican American studies. The elective courses will be for high school seniors starting next school year.
The courses were originally approved by district trustees in November 2020, according to a district spokesperson.
In recent weeks, the district has come under fire after a 13-year African American student at Haggard Middle School was allegedly the target of racial slurs and abuse during an off-campus sleepover.
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“We are talking about a situation that happened at a middle school,” said activist Dominque Alexander, who said he believed the creation of the new courses falls well short of a solution. “So that really doesn’t speak to us, it really says that Plano ISD is not sitting down with these issues with the family."
Plano ISD declined NBC DFW’s request for an interview. In recent weeks, the district's investigation into the bullying and abuse allegations concluded but the district declined to release any findings, citing student privacy.
“I would be pushing for more transparency. That is one thing I have to admit that I have been disappointed in,” said Lauren Tyra, a Plano ISD parent who is running for the board of trustees.
Tyra is running for Place 1 against Semida Voicu.
Tyra said she believed the creation of the courses was a positive step but more needed to be done both in terms diversity efforts and pro-active steps to confront bullying.
“How do we keep this from happening to another child and understanding how prevalent bullying is on PISD campuses is the first step,” Tyra said.