Latoya Martin, of Rowan County, said her 8-year-old had brought home a book called “Redneck Night Before Christmas” to read with her family.
“It broke my heart,” said Martin.
She said the book from the Mount Ulla Elementary School library contained at least five images of the Confederate flag and a man with a gun.
Martin said the flags drawn over Santa’s sack were covered in Post-it Notes, telling her that someone knew it would be offensive but left it on the school shelves anyway.
“How many homes has the book been in and no one contacted the school?” she said. “How did it get into my hands?”
In an email, the school principal told Martin that she was shocked to learn that this book was also in the library. The principal said Mount Ulla Elementary received the donated book at the beginning of the year from another school that was closed.
The principal also acknowledged that the school should have been more proactive in screening donated books and reviewing items on library shelves.
Martin said the incident led to a conversation with her daughter, who until now had no idea what the Confederate flag represents.
“She’s the only African American in her class… It makes me emotional because as a parent I want to protect my child and I want my child to be a child,” she said. “I don’t want them to worry about all the hatred in the world.”
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