District officials in Norcross said they would work with the faculty at Beaver Creek Elementary School to come up with better questions than: "Each tree had 56 oranges. If 8 slaves pick them equally, then how much would each slave pick?"
But some parents and local civil-rights activists say the entire series of questions dealing with story-problem slaves toiling on a hypothetical plantation ranked a public apology.
"Intentionally or not, this was inappropriate," Jennifer Falk, a community activist and parent of two high school students in the area, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The newspaper said Sunday other questions included calculating how many times a slave named Frederick would get beaten in a week if he average two wallops per day.
District spokeswoman Sloan Roach told the newspaper the teachers were trying to fold a little American history into the third-grade math exercise. "Clearly, they did not do as good of a job as they should have done," she said.