'Miss Iraq pageant' assignment leads to Monroe teacher investigation

- What was once considered comedy -- could lead to the downfall of a high school teacher in Monroe.

He brought back an old David Letterman sketch as part of an assignment but not many people were laughing.

An attempt to school kids on scatterplots leads to a teacher getting a lesson on what is - and is not - appropriate in the classroom.

"High-pitched shrieking"  "Blowing self-up in a parking lot" and "Getting explosives through airport security." Those are just a few of the top talents of "Miss Iraq" contestants according to an assignment from a math teacher at Monroe High School.

Sierra Bemis and Nicolette Woods are Monroe High School students

"I would say it was very inappropriate," said student Sierra Bemis. "He should get fired for it."

The assignment was handed out last week. The district found out about it after someone posted it on Facebook.

"It was disappointing to say the least," said Supt. Dr. Barry Martin. "The district is very conscious of making sure students understand the importance of cultural diversity and anything that gets in the way of that understanding or dissuades them from that path we take very seriously."

Students were supposed to create a scatterplot ranking the funniest and least funny jokes and compare them to David Letterman's rankings. The assignment was based on one of Letterman's sketches from the early 90s.

"There are all types of things David Letter, Dave Chappelle and other comedians have said that are not classroom appropriate," said Dawud Walid, from the Council of American Islamic Relations. "(It is not) appropriate for a classroom setting especially at this time right now when there are so many children of color, Muslim children especially, being bullied at schools."

The teacher is on paid leave as the district investigates what happened last week.

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