Drawing swastikas lands students in trouble

PROSPECT — Eight Long River Middle School students faced disciplinary action after drawing swastikas in their peers’ yearbooks on the second to last day of school.

Superintendent of Schools Michael Yamin said eighth-graders were signing each other’s yearbooks June 14 when it was discovered that the eight students drew the symbol, associated with the Nazi Party and white supremacists, in permanent marker in the yearbooks of fellow eighth-graders. He said the symbols weren’t directed at anyone specifically.

A letter was sent home to parents informing them of the situation. The eight students weren’t allowed to attend the eighth grade end-of-year picnic the following day, and eighth-graders were also banned from signing yearbooks at the picnic.

The parents of the eight students were called in to talk with administrators, Yamin said.

“We made it very clear to the kids and all the eighth-grade parents, we sent a letter home, that Region 16 does not condone that behavior,” Yamin said.

The eight students spent the day of the picnic working with counselors doing educational activities, Yamin said.

“We educated them on the inappropriateness of their actions and the symbols,” Yamin said.