Students from Claremont Secondary involved in the use of a hate symbol at a grad party are working to make amends. This photo has been manipulated to blur the offensive symbol written on the back of a student. (Photo submitted)

Claremont Secondary students make amends after hate symbol used at grad party

Families working with school administration, local rabbi, superintendent says

Parents and school administration took swift action after a student from Claremont Secondary was spotted wearing a hate symbol at a graduation party on June 20.

Dave Eberwein, superintendent of School District 63, explained that during the Saturday evening gathering in Saanich, students were taking part in a party game called “little white lies” where untrue statements are written on the back of each person’s shirt. During the game, one student drew a swastika symbol on the back of another student’s T-shirt.

READ ALSO: School teacher tests positive for COVID-19 as B.C. sees two new deaths, 20 cases

The symbol was worn for a short period of time before adults at the party noticed and asked the student to remove it, Eberwein said.

He emphasized that it was “a moment of careless indiscretion” but pointed out that “one never likes to see that symbol used in a careless manner.”

While the symbol wasn’t used to support the negative connotations associated with it, the intent “doesn’t excuse the behaviour,” Eberwein said.

It was “not very thoughtful … especially during these times,” he added, referencing protests taking place around the world against systemic racism.

Eberwein said the students involved felt terrible and wanted to make amends. The parents of both the student who wrote the symbol and the student who wore it have also been “involved in trying to right the ship.”

READ ALSO: Police seek suspect in downtown Victoria hate crime, victim struck with bottle

The incident was “taken very seriously by the school” as it “never should have happened,” he said.

The students and parents are working with school administration and will be taking part in “lots of deep learning” about the symbol and its history with a local rabbi. Eberwein is hopeful the incident can be an opportunity to educate and make amends.

Claremont principal Peter Westhaver declined to comment when Black Press Media reached out on June 26.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of Saanich

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Court strikes down Sidney’s denial of proposed cannabis store

Justice Jennifer Power orders municipality to reconsider application and pay court costs

VicPD seeking witnesses for fatal crash on Hillside Avenue

A pedestrian was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries, where she later died

VicPD searching for three men in connection to random assault that put two in hospital

If you see these men you’re asked to call VicPD’s non-emergency line

Public welcomed back to Sidney Spit ferry and camping ground

Service opens July 20 with new ferry contractor and other pandemic-related changes

B.C. ends short experiment with growler fills at restaurants

Province extends take-out sales of six-packs, wine

21 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in B.C. as virus ‘silently circulates’ in broader community

Health officials urge British Columbians to enjoy summer safely as surge continues

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 13

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Tough time for tree fruits as some B.C. farm products soar

Province reports record 2019 sales, largely due to cannabis

‘Let’s all do a self-check’: Okanagan mayor reacts to racist vandalism targeting local family

Home of Indo-Canadian family in Summerland was targeted on evening of July 13

Province agrees to multimillion-dollar payout for alleged victims of Kelowna social worker

Robert Riley Saunders is accused of misappropriating funds of children — often Indigenous — in his care

Feds fund safe drug supply pilot program for Cowichan

The opioid overdose crisis continues to be one of the most serious public health crises

B.C. businessman David Sidoo gets 3 months behind bars for college admissions scam

Sidoo was sentenced for hiring someone take the SATs in place of his two sons

PHOTOS: Inside a newly-listed $22M mega-mansion on ALR land in B.C.

The large home, located on ALR land, is one of the last new mansions to legally be built on ALR land

Most Read