(Yahoo News) — Growing up, many of us were taught to refer to our elders as “ma’am” and “sir,” especially if you were raised in the South. However, while some may think of the terms as a polite way to show respect, others find them to be outdated — and possibly even offensive.
Parents Teretha Wilson and McArthur Bryant were shocked to find out that their 10-year-old son, Tamarion, was punished by his fifth-grade teacher at North East Carolina Preparatory School in Tarboro, N.C., because he called her “ma’am.”
When Tamarion got off the school bus, Wilson said, she could tell something was wrong with him. Then the boy showed his mother a sheet of paper with the word “ma’am” written numerous times, according to WTVD. His teacher asked him to write it, he told his mother, and return it with a parent’s signature after he repeatedly called her the word despite being told not to do so.