UPDATED: Framingham Public Schools Investigating ‘Hate Crime’ at Elementary School

Originally posted at 5:53 p.m. Last updated at 9:48 p.m. 

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FRAMINGHAM – Framingham Public Schools is investigating a note left for a students at one of its elementary school, as a hate crime.

Framingham Superintendent of Schools Bob Tremblay said a note was left for a student last week, another one left for the same student this week.

“I want to denounce this behavior, “said Tremblay. “This is not acceptable in our schools. We are working to identify who left the note.”

The notes were left for a student at Hemenway Elementary School.

One of the notes said “I will kill you.” The other said “you’re a terrorist.”

Both notes were left for a girl, who is a Muslim, according to those involved with the matter.

The Superintendent said he established an interfaith council for the schools, and that group will meet tomorrow.

“I always view these kinds of matters as community problems to address and not just a school issue,” said Tremblay.

“Many of you may be aware of a series of unfortunate events that have taken place over the last couple of days at Hemenway Elementary School. Two letters, one found on Friday and another on Monday, were placed in a students storage bin. Both letters contained hateful and harmful words with the Monday’s message threatening harm. As I have stated in the past, any form of hate or bias is unacceptable and unwelcome in our community,” said Tremblay in a message to parents tonight.

“Today we had another serious incident that threatens the safety of the Hemenway Community.  This morning the same student who had received a hate note in her mailbox on Friday, found another threatening note.  Again all students were upset and saddened that their classmate had received yet another note. At this time we still do not know who wrote either note,” wrote Hemenway Principal Liz Simon to parents.

“Due to the serious nature of the incident the Framingham School District will be conducting an internal investigation spearheaded by the Office of Equity, Diversity and Community Development. The Framingham Police are involved and will be investigating as well. This type of incident has no place in the Hemenway Community and will not be tolerated,” wrote Simon to parents.

“While we are extremely disappointed in this turn of events, we remain committed to equity and justice. As we continue our investigations we will continue to use this as a teachable moment to ensure all students learn how to create and sustain a welcoming community for all. It is not lost on me the harm these letters have caused the family and the greater Muslim community. I want to reassure you the Framingham Public Schools stands with you. We will not accept hate. We will stand united against it,” said Tremblay in an email that went out to district parents tonight after 9:30 p.m.

“This action is a discriminatory hate crime and must never be tolerated at any level. Compassion, supportive communication, and respect are part of the norms I see constantly within the Framingham Public Schools. The quick response by FPS Administrators to work with the Hemenway community and set the right tone is appreciated, said School Committee Chair Adam Freudberg.

“This is a stressful time for our community; it is of the utmost importance that our students are, and feel, safe and respected at school. Please continue to have meaningful conversations with you children, our students, to ensure a safe, inclusive learning environment for all,” wrote Simon.

“We have put a blue box on the little painted table outside the office in the lobby for any student to use who may have information to share.  If you as a parent have information to share please call 508-626-9150 extension #5 to speak with me,” wrote the Principal.

 

Framingham Source Editor Susan Petroni

Susan Petroni Framingham Source Editor Email: editor@FraminghamSource.com Phone: 508-315-7176

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