Swastikas, Racist Graffiti Found at Massachusetts Middle School Amid Controversy Over Alleged Misconduct
Antisemitic, homophobic, and racist graffiti was discovered at Holten Richmond Middle School in Danvers, Massachusetts this week, amid an ongoing controversy over how school board officials dealt with allegations of misconduct on the high school’s hockey team.
“This hate crime and type of hateful behavior has no place in our Danvers Schools or any place in our community,” said school officials in a statement Tuesday. “It will not be tolerated. We are incredibly disappointed that this type of behavior has occurred in our school and understand the frustration of the community.”
“We are acutely aware that this most recent incident fits into a broader pattern,” they said.
Two swastikas were found scrawled in a bathroom at the Boston-area school, the Boston Globe reported, along with racist and homophobic statements.
Robert Trestan, Northeast Regional Executive Director of the Anti-Defamation League, said Tuesday that condemning the graffiti is a “good first step, but must be followed by action.”
“To regain trust, the community deserves transparency and a role in moving forward,” he said. “Healing in the aftermath of hate requires accountability at all levels, including investigations of past incidents, curriculum adjustments, leadership development initiatives for staff and students and stakeholder engagement.”
School committee members have called for Dana to placed on leave for allegedly concealing the sexual assault and racial taunting of a hockey player, according to The Globe. Other recent incidents noted by school officials Tuesday included an “apparent noose left outside a local church” and a “swastika discovered in the woods behind the middle school.”
“We want to be crystal clear in our condemnation of these acts, actions, and allegations. Individually, they are ugly, unacceptable, and have no place in Danvers or in any community. Collectively, they are proof that there’s much work to be done,” Dana said on Tuesday.