School Gives Autistic Child ‘Most Annoying Male’ Award
An elementary school in Indiana is under fire after giving an 11-year-old autistic boy a “most annoying male” award at its end of the school year celebration.
“Akalis Castejon is non-verbal, but the 11-year-old communicates with the joy of any child during summer break, according to WGNTV. “Akalis just finished the fifth grade at Bailly Preparatory Academy in Gary. The school ended with a special awards luncheon for the students.”
Other superlative categories reportedly included “funniest” and “best student.”
Castejon’s parents were outraged.
“So when they called him up, they’re calling the names, and they were like, ‘most annoying male award,'” Rick Castejon said. “I wasn’t expecting that, not for an autistic kid, at all.”
“For a teacher to do that, I believe it was a huge mistake. I also feel it’s how she feels about my son,” his mother Estella said.
The New York Post reported Wednesday that the school met with Castejon’s parents, and will be taking disciplinary action against faculty members who participated in the incident.
“We acknowledge the potential impact that an experience like this could have on a child’s mental well-being, self-esteem and overall level of comfortability in a learning environment going forward,” Gary Community School Corp. emergency manager Peter Morikis said.
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