One D.C. middle school homework assignment goes a little something like this: Compare and contrast former President George W. Bush with Adolf Hitler.
On Tuesday, as McKinley Middle School students worked on a unit about war and peace, a teacher handed out a worksheet she created that said just that. The Northeast Washington students were told to turn the worksheet in Wednesday after finishing up readings about Hitler and Bush.
“The teacher deeply regrets this mistake, and any suggestion to malign the presidency or make any comparison in this egregious way,” Melissa Salmanowitz, spokeswoman for D.C. schools, said in a statement.
Salmanowitz also said in the teacher admits “to extremely poor judgment and short-sightedness and will apologize to students.”
D.C. school officials were alerted about the homework assignment Wednesday, Salmanowitz said.
According to the statement, the District of Columbia Public Schools provides teachers with “an English-Language Arts curriculum that outlines the topics, texts and standards to be taught within instructional units, while allowing teachers the flexibility to decide the best approach and day-to-day lessons for their students.”
“No DCPS curriculum materials suggest in any way that teachers should compare the texts in this manner or compare Hitler to any other individual,” she said in the statement.
Officials did not name the teacher or give details about their employment history at the school, which is the only science technology, engineering and mathematics middle school within the public school system. They also did not reveal if any action had been taken following the assignment.
Salmanowitz said the school system does not comment on the specifics of personnel matters.
According to DCPS, 193 students are enrolled McKinley Middle School this school year.