Middleton School Teachers in Hot Seat for Halloween Costumes

Elementary school staff dressed as border wall, Mexicans. Now they’re under investigation | The Fresno Bee

Idaho elementary school teachers dressed as Mexican stereotypes and border wall for Halloween

One of the now-deleted photos shows six teachers wearing patriotic outfits and standing behind fake-brick panels that make up a wall bearing President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign slogan.

Several school staff members are on leave after photos showing teachers dressed up as a "border wall" and Mexican stereotypes caused an uproar.

The Middleton School District is investigating the incident, and it's possible the agency that enforces the state's anti-discrimination laws will do its own investigation into the matter, a spokesman for the Idaho Human Rights Commission told the Statesman Friday.

Faculty at the elementary school reportedly held a costume competition that involved dressing up to represent various countries.

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Superintendent Josh Middleton said in a Facebook live video Friday morning that he was alerted to the issue by a parent who called to express concern. "We embrace all students". He said he offers his "sincerest and deepest apologies" to the families and patrons of the district. "Again, we are better than this".

The photos were taken down from the Facebook page, but once screenshots began to circulate, the backlash began.

A number of staffers in the Middleton School District thought it was a good idea to dress in costume as they did on Wednesday for Halloween.

They also dressed in stereotypical - some say "racist" - sombreros and ponchos, playing maracas.

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"We are learning from this and changing and again, being the school district we know we can be", he said. Idaho DACA Students' Facebook page also posted the photos, noting that the costumes are disheartening, heartbreaking and not amusing.

There was probably no malicious intent, he said, just poor judgment - adding that the district will be conducting an investigation.

According to 2017 census data, 9.5% of Middleton's population of about 7,400 are Hispanic or Latino. According to U.S. Census Bureau data, almost 10 percent of Middleton's population are Hispanic, and the school district offers a migrant education program.

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