Why did this happen? Parkway Central parents learn more about racist graffiti

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Parents at Parkway Central High School are learning more about the graffiti found at the school last week. On Thursday, hundreds of Parkway Central High School students walked out of class in protest of hate speech.

Graffiti found in bathroom

The student responsible for the graffiti was identified, admitted to the offense, and will be held accountable according to the district’s discipline policy. The messages were written, “all over the stalls, on the ground, on the mirrors.”

The motivation behind the graffiti is not clear.

This is the letter sent home to parents today:

September 28, 2021

Dear Parkway Community,

I wanted to follow up regarding racist graffiti in our bathrooms last week. The investigation at North High is still ongoing. The investigation has concluded at Central High School related to this incident. The evidence led to a single student and the student admitted writing the messages.

The student responsible is not white, however this does not diminish the hurt it caused or the negative impact it has had on our entire community.

Our student discipline policy is clear. Regardless of the reason or the individual responsible, these acts are a significant violation of multiple codes of conduct outlined in our policies. The student is facing severe disciplinary consequences and referral to law enforcement for investigation. Parkway will continue to hold students responsible for any behavior that threatens or degrades others in our school community.

We remain hurt by the actions of the student, as it does not represent the values of our community. We cannot presume the reasons a student would do this and it will be important to understand why this happened as we move forward.

Last week was difficult for many of our students and staff. We also saw many positive outcomes. I want to acknowledge the actions our students took as a result of these incidents. Students proactively led walkouts at multiple Parkway high schools and in these moments, many students shared personal experiences of racism throughout their lives and at school. Their voice was a clear indication that more work is needed to ensure our school cultures and communities are safe for each student regardless of their race. I want to tell the thousands of students who participated on behalf of themselves and their fellow classmates: I am proud of you for supporting one another and we heard you loud and clear.

We will also continue to take action to ensure our schools are places where all students feel they belong. Let us use this opportunity to continue to grow as a community to be more compassionate, peaceful and loving individuals with care for all.

Thank you all for your support,

Dr. Marty

Letter from Superintendent Keith Marty

The Parkway School District confirmed to FOX2 the student involved was Black. It announced racial slurs were found in bathrooms at Parkway North High School in addition to Central High School. The district is working with the police to investigate the incidents.

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