A Michigan school system is under fire after a student posted a photograph of a questionnaire which asked deeply personal questions – including their parents’ political affiliation, whether a family member has ever been convicted of a crime, whether the student or family members have seen a psychologist, and whether their parents have ever lost a job.
After the post went viral, the Grosse Point School District issued an explanation, claiming that students “were provided with a questionnaire which looked like an official document from South Administration,” which “was shared on social media without any context.”
According to the district, “The document and questions were intentionally designed as a simulation of McCarthyism and to make students question the appropriateness of the information being requested,” and that “within a minute, the teacher explained the purpose of the exercise was not to collect this information, but to demonstrate how private citizens’ rights and privacy were invaded during McCarthyism in the 1950s.”
The note goes on to say that the document, created several years ago, was “collected and destroyed,” and that this is the first time they’ve experienced an issue with it.
Needless to say, a lengthy debate has ensued.