(WJBK) - Students at Plymouth High School say they were subjected to racial slurs and acts of hate.
Two teens say they were called the n-word and their parents call the classroom unsafe and the school's response inadequate.
That student and his brother have not been to school the past few days. They say they are no longer comfortable being there in light of the racism they say they've experienced from students and the apathy from teachers and coaches. They say it all came to head last week.
"I was like, 'really?'" Kaleb Smith said. "No human being should be treated like this."
That's what 15-year-old Kaleb Smith thought when he says a student called him the n-word. He says it happened at Plymouth High School last week while playing basketball during open gym
"My team won and the Caucasian kid, he was so mad he walked up to me and said, 'You n-word, you suck.' I said how do I suck, if we won. He walked up in my face and he put his hands on me. I nudged him off of me, and he got back in my face then struck me in my face.
"So then I cocked my fist back and I thought to myself, is it really worth it."
Kaleb's parents went to police and Canton police is investigating the incident. The student was suspended for three days.
Kaleb's twin brother Jacob says he had a run-in with the student when he returned to school this week. It was during lunch. The student was playing a video game, his back turned. Jacob says he did not recognize him until the middle of this exchange.
"I tapped him on the shoulder, I said 'Sir may I sit there so I can play Mario Kart. I was very respectful because I'm very respectful to people. instead, he looks at me and says 'No get away from me you n-word.' And I just sat there like wow what did I do to deserve this."
The brothers say these are not rare occurrences.
During a summer football camp, Jacob says students joked their father, who is black, couldn't possibly own a car and if he did, he stole it.
During a school symphony trip to Chicago, Kaleb says students named a mobile hotspot used to browse the internet, "Say n-i-g-g-e-r for the password."
"There's this one Caucasian boy, and he said 'Kaleb say the n-word, I want the password. If you don't say it I’m going to say it.' He kept taunting me the whole bus ride to Chicago.
"I informed my teacher, she did nothing. Everything is swept up under the rug at this school. As far as the coaches, boys are just boys."
"How am I supposed to feel safe with my children in this environment," said mom Melissa Shaft. "I can't. I don't know what to do. I don't know where to go, where to turn.
Melissa Shaft and Raysean Turner, the boys' parents, want the district to take the issue more seriously. They say their sons are not alone.
"The inequality, the racial discrimination, the bullying, it all has to stop for every child in there," she said.
"Because there are more," Turner said. "They just don't want to speak out."
Canton police case turned the case over to prosecutors.
FOX 2 received a statement from Superintendent Monica Meritt that reads in part:
"Plymouth-Canton Community Schools is committed to providing a safe and supportive learning environment for all students. There is currently an ongoing investigation into allegations of bullying and the use of racial slurs by a student at one of our high schools. Because this situation involves students, we are not able to discuss specific details of the investigation. However, we will continue to follow our Student Code of Conduct and take appropriate action at the conclusion of this investigation.
"Bullying, harassment or intimidation of any nature is never acceptable and will not be tolerated."