Racist rant of Grosse Pointe South students posted online; district takes action
GROSSE POINTE, Mich. (WJBK) -
Five middle school students arrested after a prank goes too far. The kids allegedly set off smoke bombs inside their Shelby Township school, forcing everyone to evacuate.
For the second time in recent months, some students in Grosse Pointe are in hot water for using racially offensive language.
This time the incident was recorded and posted to social media.
The words are brewing anger and distress in the Grosse Pointe community from a racist rant of Grosse Pointe South High School students online.
The district's superintendent Thursday called the comments disappointing and deplorable.
"We need to take a stand against this and we don't want this to happen in our schools or our community," said Dr. Gary Niehaus, Grosse Pointe Schools superintendent.
In the video discovered Tuesday, students can be heard saying they should "burn black people," "make them slaves," and "send them back to Africa."
Grosse Pointe Public Schools Superintendent Gary Niehaus says three boys involved have been identified along with a fourth who attends a different school.
The student seen in the video were admittedly drinking while making the recording -- and has since apologized to the principal.
Niehaus says that he must also apologize to his classmates.
"Our kids know better and you get disappointed when you think kids know better and they continue to make poor choices," Niehaus said. "Continue to make poor choices."
You may remember six other students from Grosse Pointe South were suspended in March after school officials discovered pictures of them displaying the N-word across their stomachs.
And just a month before that, 11 students were caught eating marijuana cookies on their annual field trip to a choir competition.
Last year an off-campus student comedy show was said to have offensive jokes about race, sexual orientation and students with special needs.
"I think we're in the toughest times we've had in the history of the United States with racism," Niehaus said. "And I think it flares up in ways we have not seen in the past."
Niehaus says the district is planning to discipline the students involved and will hold weekly discussions with students from the Black Awareness for Education club, a forum on diversity and race.
"It's going to take a lot of effort and energy for us to come back together again," he said.
Niehaus says he will be talking with the parents of those students to discuss appropriate discipline and likely suspensions.
Police have also been contacted regarding the underage drinking.