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Mon Jan 7, 2013, 10:33 AM

Update about the racist sign at playground - REMOVED!!!!

You all remember about this playground sign:

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In English it's just a friendly reminder that children should have a parent or guardian there watching them as they play at the playground. But in spanish it says that you need a permit to play there and that police will be called if you are there without a police.

The sign went viral

Here's an update



http://www.milfordbeacon.com/article/20130106/NEWS/130109863/1003/NEWS

Milford, Del. --
Milford Superintendent Phyllis Kohel on Sunday personally removed a handful of Spanish-language signs at two elementary school playgrounds that sparked accusations of racism and discrimination over the weekend.

“Regardless of what the signs do or do not say, if there is even a perception that we are discriminating against any group, I felt they needed to come down immediately,” Kohel said after she and her husband finished taking down the four signs at Lulu Ross and Mispillion elementary schools. “We have a wide variety of ethnic groups in our schools and discrimination against any group goes against everything the Milford School District stands for.”

For the past year, the Spanish language signs at the two elementary schools told readers they needed special permission to use the playground facilities and warned that violations of that requirement could result in police action.

That message directly contradicted the English signs on the very same poles, which told readers they only needed parental or guardian supervision to use the playgrounds, along with a warning to play at your own risk.

<<<<snip>>>>

“Signs with the same message in English and Spanish are posted at the sports fields at the high school complex and the middle school, because you do have to have permission to use those fields,” she said. “The playgrounds at Mispillion and Ross are both relatively new and I think someone put the Spanish signs meant for the athletic fields at those locations by mistake.”


In a nutshell, they said that someone was probably just lazy and used a similar sign that was already in use at the sports field - where you do need permission in order to use it and the signs in english and spanish both say that.

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Reply Update about the racist sign at playground - REMOVED!!!! (Original post)
LynneSin Jan 2013 OP
JoePhilly Jan 2013 #1
LynneSin Jan 2013 #2
Nye Bevan Jan 2013 #3
LynneSin Jan 2013 #4

Response to LynneSin (Original post)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 10:44 AM

1. I wondered about that possibility when I saw this.

Years ago, I worked for a recreation center in Philadelphia. As part of it, I did lots of simple maintenance kinds of work. We fixed fences, or worked on the fields, we put up signs.

Very frequently, the decision to do something was made by some one who didn't actually have to do it. Some one said "go dig a hole". You'd dig a hole.

I can imagine some one saying ... "Hey, go down stairs and get the signs for the new playgrounds, get one in English, and one in Spanish. Then, take them over and put them up." ... my response would be ... "umm, ok." You go down stairs, find the English sign, and one in Spanish (same color, probably says the same thing, right?), grab some nuts and bolts ... and off you go.



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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 10:51 AM

2. I truly think that was the case

Yes it was suspect because this was a playground that was in lower Delaware which is way way more conservative then the rest of the state. But someone who probably did not know spanish saw the word 'permiso' and figured it just was saying you need permission to play in the park. And technically children should have permission to play in the park - from their parents.

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Response to LynneSin (Original post)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 10:55 AM

3. Yeah, here is the English version of the Spanish sign. This was posted at the sports fields.



As you say, the screwup was to use the Spanish version of the sports field sign at the playground, instead of the Spanish translation of the playground sign.

For the sake of their blood pressure, people should try to keep their outrage under control until the full story comes out.

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 01:28 PM

4. The interview with the Superintendent from the school was pretty intesting

She seems like a really nice lady that had absolutely no idea about the signs until someone pointed them out to her. When she found out it was her that drove to each of the parks and personally remove the offending signs. She did not want to wait another minute until a maintenance crew to show up and get rid of the signs. She also stated that in the future when signs like that are placed anywhere on the school district (English language signs with spanish languages one) that she will consult with one of the district spanish teachers to ensure the spanish language sign matches the English one.

I can see that for the most part it was an honest mistake on the part of the school district. But what really bothers me is that it took over a year for someone to even notice. Again this is a pretty conservative part of the state where there are a slew of right-wing crazies. The bulk of our Tea Party members live in that county where Milford is. So I'm guessing there were probably enough people out there that saw the sign and probably knew what the spanish sign had said but figured they liked the idea that 'undesirables' were not invited to play in the park. If that sign was on parks up here in New Castle county it wouldn't have lasted a day. But down in Sussex county it managed to survive unnoticed for over a year.

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