Yesterday I participated in the first day of Occupy the DOE, where parents and teachers spoke out against DOE policies that demand high-stakes testing and school closings. In my own presentation, I urged the DOE to stop its punitive policies and instead to follow the positive agenda of the Network for Public Education.

According to an account I read later, an earlier speaker used offensive language, calling Michelle Rhee an “Asian bitch.”

I was not there to hear it, but I was appalled when I read about it here.

I want to make clear that this kind of language is unacceptable and intolerable. No one should resort to racial, ethnic, gender, or cultural slurs to express their views. It is just plain wrong.

I don’t use that kind of language, and I encourage others to have a high personal standard of civility.

We must be able disagree about ideas and policies without getting personal.