A middle school basketball coach in Elkhart, Ind., was suspended last month for telling her players “to not act black.”
Vicki Rogers, a teacher at North Side Middle School who has been a district employee for about 30 years, was suspended from coaching the girls’ basketball team on Jan. 22, but she continues to teach at the school, according to The Elkhart Truth.
Official records show Rogers was suspended for telling players not to “act black,” but the newspaper also reported that she described players on an opposing team as “ghetto.”
The newspaper said the comments were confirmed by a meeting with the school principal that was recorded by a parent. Two mothers who spoke to the paper anonymously also reported the comments and said they were deeply offended by the remarks, and one of them has called for Rogers to be fired.
One of the mothers told the newspaper that Rogers’ full comment was: “I don’t care what you think about what I am about to say, but you better not go out there and act black like the ghetto girls at Pierre Moran.” Pierre Moran is another middle school in the town.
“There’s still some discrepancy over what the words actually were, but it was something along the lines of, ‘Don’t behave like other girls that might be at another school,’ and the way that was said didn’t go over very well,” Robert Woods, director of business operations at Elkhart Community Schools, said in an interview on local news station WNDU.
“There was a reference to black students, yes,” Woods said. “I don’t believe her intent was to degrade folks.”
Rogers and school representatives did not immediately respond to TIME’s requests for comment.