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Controversial quiz question sparks parent's concern at California school

A Whitney High School alumni started a petition to fire the teacher after a photo of the quiz question began circulating on social media.

ROCKLIN, Calif. — A social science teacher at Whitney High School in Rocklin is receiving backlash online after giving out a controversial quiz in class.

A friend of a Whitney High School parent posted a photo of the quiz question on Facebook, which read:

"A group of complete idiots

a. KKK

b. all of Florida

c. Fox News

d. Texans”

Jessa Krissovich said she posted the photo because the student and mom were worried about potential fallout if they posted the photo themselves. 

"I just feel that the kids should be supported in this. We live in the United States where everyone has a different background. No one should feel bad for who they are, whether their religion or political beliefs," Jessa Krissovich told ABC10.

The quiz was originally given out to students on Thursday, Nov. 4.

Whitney High School Principal, Justin Cutts, posted a statement on Twitter the following day and said the high school administration and Rocklin Unified School District are investigating the situation.

"A quiz was assigned to students by a social science teacher. However, students, families and the Rocklin community have raised concerns about the class assignment," Cutts said in a statement.

A Whitney High School alum posted an online petition, now with more than 150 signatures, calling for the teacher who allegedly administered the quiz to be fired.

"[The teacher] has worked to polarize his students, alienating his "Conservative" students in what should be a politically neutral, safe space," the creator of the petition, Nathan Elizarraraz, wrote.

ABC10 spoke with two parents, both of whom asked not to use their names out of concerns of backlash against their students. Both parents said they’re concerned this quiz question isn’t the first time the teacher has made students who hold conservative views feel uncomfortable. 

One parent, whose son is in the teacher's class and took the quiz told ABC10 that the teacher often says things in a joking manner, but it still concerns her and her son.

“He needs to teach U.S. history and stay on the subject and not go off on, say, tangents or that are extremely biased. It has to stop," the mother said. "To me, it’s indoctrination because the kids don’t know better. He‘s in an authoritative position and the kids look up to the teacher."

When asked if she thinks the teacher should be fired, this mother said, "I’d like to see him just stop and teach his class appropriately," adding that if the teacher refuses to do that, then removal would be appropriate. 

The other parent, whose son took the teacher's class last year told ABC10 he is happy overall with Whitney High School, but in this situation, he thinks there should be discipline. 

"[My son] actually enjoyed the class when they were learning the stuff that you're supposed to be learning," this father said. "But it was when it came down to a lot of the political views that were kind of forced and pushed. And actually, some of the stuff [the teacher] was saying was almost conspiracy theory against anyone who thought conservative."

ABC10 reached out to Whitney High School and the district to confirm the identity of the teacher and to find out which answer would have earned the student a point. A spokesperson for the Rocklin Unified School District provided a statement but didn't directly address either inquiry.

"The Rocklin Unified School District is committed to ensuring all campuses provide a safe and welcoming environment for its students, families, and staff. Rocklin Unified and Whitney High School are aware of the concerns of the class assignment and do not approve of any instance that causes students to feel uncomfortable. Disciplinary action will be taken following the conclusion of the thorough investigation," said Sundeep Dosanjh, spokesperson for the district.


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