Old Wives' Tales
Radio & TV
Toxin du jour
Claim: Teachers have gotten into trouble over using 'The L.A. Math Test,' a piece of Internet humor, in the classroom.
Example: [Collected via e-mail, 2002]
Origins: The Internet humor piece variously entitled "The L.A. Math Proficiency Test" or "The City of
Obvious humor or not, the "test" has landed a number of educators into trouble over the years. The Canadian National Post reported that a teacher at the Juniper School in Thompson, Manitoba, was suspended from her duties in
A Manitoba school district has barred a Grade 8 instructor from classroom teaching for a year after she distributed a math quiz that used pimps and cocaine trafficking to illustrate questions of arithmetic.(Diana Hiscock, general manager of the Thompson Citizen, said that the controversial quiz wasn't given out as an official school assignment or test: "The teacher gave it to a few of her
The 10-question quiz asked how much Willie would make for stealing a number of luxury cars, the distance a thief could travel on a stolen skateboard before he gets "whacked," and how many "tricks" a day three prostitutes must turn to support their pimp Rufus's cocaine habit.
The School District of Mystery Lake in Thompson, Man., suspended the veteran Juniper School teacher on June 5, two days after irate parents brought the "joke" test to the district's attention. This week the district disciplined her further by assigning her to non-classroom teaching until June, 2003. The teacher has not been identified.
"I don't know where she got the idea to give this to kids. We were outraged," one student's father, who asked not to be identified, told The Winnipeg Sun. The father saw the "Juniper School Math Proficiency Exam" after his young son brought his copy home from school.
In 2007, Will Klundt, a teacher at Moriarty High School in Moriarty,
Smoky J. sells meth. Smoky's source says he has to sell a G's worth of meth by the end of the month. If Smoky sold $240 the first week and $532 the second week, how much money must Smoky make if he wants to avoid the beat down from his connection?Wayne Marshall, the school's principal, declined to discuss whether any disciplinary action will be taken against the teacher.
In 2008, a Barrie, Ontario, police officer was suspended from duty for forwarding a version of the "L.A. Math Test" to other officers via
A Barrie police inspector in charge of professional standards has been relieved of his duties after sending an e-mail containing racially inappropriate material to fellow officers.Those named in these later examples are far from the first persons to have been disciplined for distributing the "L.A. Math Test." In 1997, six teachers at the Elsie Robertson High School in Lancaster, Texas, and another at the Norte Vista High School in Riverside, California, were suspended for doing the same thing. Likewise, in 1994, a Chicago elementary school teacher who gave a similar test was suspended for thirty days without pay and then resigned. Also in 1994, an Indiana high school teacher who gave the test apologized but was suspended anyway. And in 1993, a similar test was printed on phony school letterhead and passed around at workplaces in Redwood City, California.
James Farrell, a 30-year police veteran, admitted to forwarding the inappropriate message to officers under his command.
The offensive e-mail with the subject line "Afrocentric MATH for Toronto's new black only school" was initially addressed to three officers and the entire street crime unit. It was then forwarded and passed along within the organization eventually coming to light when an officer contacted The Toronto Star.
The message resembles a school math test with 10 "problems" based on firearms use, drug deals, pimping, theft and other criminal offences.
Barbara "the prime suspects of Miss Jean Brodie" Mikkelson
Last updated: 18 February 2008
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