School punishes boy for mask similar to KKK attire

KATY, TX (KTRK) -- A father said his teenage son is being unfairly punished for wearing a paper mask other students thought resembled garb worn by the KKK.

Blake Alcede is a Freshman at Cinco Ranch High School.

"My teacher was outside on the phone, so I decided to make a mask out of my finished work because we didn't need it," said Blake. "I put it on my head, put two eyeholes in it, and it was all fun in games."

Blake said another student wanted to add a cone to his mask.

"I thought it was just a regular mask," said Blake. "I didn't know what the KKK was in the beginning, so everybody was laughing at me, taking pictures, putting it on Snapchat and stuff like that."

He says the teacher called him to the front and explained that the KKK is a hate group, and that it is no laughing matter.

Blake's dad, Jeremy, said he thinks the lesson should have ended there.

"That didn't happen, they referred him to the principal, the principal said that he's got two days of three-hour after-school detention each day," said Jeremy. "And I said that's not gonna happen. I said this kid is playing, and he didn't intentionally try to make a KKK mask, and she said, well, if he doesn't go he's gonna be suspended."

Jeremy said Blake's first day of after-school detention was supposed to be Thursday, but that he's not allowing his son to attend.

"There would be consequences for his actions if he did something bad," Jeremy said, "But this is crazy, this is just beyond crazy."

Other people near the school do not think the punishment is crazy and said Blake should have known about the KKK.

"It's a big part of American history, so I think, yeah, he should have known what he was doing," said student, Lauren McClure. "And I think he did, probably."

Gissel Cruz agrees.

"It's something they shouldn't make a joke of," said Cruz.

A spokeswoman for Katy ISD told Eyewitness News Thursday afternoon that she will investigate the incident and have a response Friday morning when teachers and administrators are back at school.

Katy ISD released a statement on Friday. It reads, "On Thursday, April 7, a Cinco Ranch High School student created a paper mask that resembled a Klu Klux Klan (KKK) hood and wore it during classroom instruction. When questioned by the teacher, the student acknowledged that he was familiar with the KKK. As a result, the student was disciplined according to the Student Code of Conduct because of the offensive nature of his actions. While school administrators are aware that the student later recanted his original comment to the teacher and claimed to be unaware of the history of the KKK, it should be noted that an account of the KKK is addressed in junior high social studies curriculum. The campus administration continues to work with the student and his parents to ensure all of their concerns are heard and addressed. As a District, our priority is to teach and reinforce positive behavioral expectations for all students by abiding by the behavioral standards outlined in the Student Code of Conduct."
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