School Will Not Fire Teacher for Using Racial Slur

CUNNINGHAM, Tenn. (AP) -- A civil rights group has asked that a Montgomery Central High School drama teacher be fired for reportedly using a racial slur in front of black students and disciplining students based on race.

The Montgomery County School System has not released any plans to dismiss Reed Bergen, but said in a statement it "does not condone unfair treatment of any person based upon color, creed or religion." The Urban Resource Center has called for Bergen to be fired.

The incident occurred when Bergen was having a discussion in his theater class related to a student's scriptwriting project. The student asked about the use of a racially derogatory term -- known as the "N word" -- in his script. Bergen read the term aloud and said he believed the term would be considered offensive.

The school system said it will initiate systemwide cultural sensitivity training as one of its goals this year.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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