ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. (KMOV.com) — Racially charged comments on social media have an exclusive private school reeling.
There has been a lot of damage control going on at MICDS in the aftermath, from school officials addressing all students Tuesday morning and holding two meetings with parents later in the day.
The inciting incident was a set of Snapchats sent by some freshmen students. The posts, now widely circulated, make at least seven mentions of the N-word along with a reference to applications to the KKK.
The fallout has administrators reeling. Head of School Lisa Lyle said she was, “horrified, deeply saddened, embarrassed and outraged.”
But these recent posts aren’t an isolated incident. Students say social media activity like this has been seen before, with similar hateful messages.
“Just in the past year you’ve had students on social media posting pictures in KKK robes, students making Instagram accounts targeting homosexual students,” said 17-year-old Bobby Loomis, a senior at MICDS. “I think MICDS has a cultural problem that needs to be addressed.”
It’s led some to wonder what is going on at the private school of some 1,200 students. John Gaskin with the St. Louis NAACP reacted to the news with concern, saying the problem is not isolated to just a handful of students.
“They’ve got a real problem over there on Warson Road. And I’m most concerned with how the administration is going to move to action with this” Gaskin said. “We are gravely concerned, these remarks are being made.”
School leaders say their policy on inclusion and respect is clear and there will be a discipline process for the students involved. The punishment could go as high as expulsion.
“I sure wish it hadn’t happened but the reaction from our internal and external community has been so clear that I believe we are all on the same page about what we expect of ourselves, so my guess is we’ll come out of this much stronger,” Lyle said.