90 Miles From Tyranny : Yet Another Hate Hoax: Black student admits to writing racist graffiti in Parkway Central bathrooms

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Thursday, September 30, 2021

Yet Another Hate Hoax: Black student admits to writing racist graffiti in Parkway Central bathrooms

About a thousand students walked out of Parkway Central High School and protested outside the Administration Office Building demanding justice on Thursday, Sept. 23, 2021, after racial hate messages were found in the bathrooms at Parkway Central High School. Photo by Laurie Skrivan, lskrivan@post-dispatch.com

CHESTERFIELD — School district officials on Tuesday said a Black student admitted writing racist graffiti in multiple bathrooms at Parkway Central High School last week.

A Parkway School District spokeswoman said officials don’t know why the student committed the acts of vandalism, or used the racist slurs.

In a letter to district parents, students and staff Tuesday, Superintendent Keith Marty said the student’s race “does not diminish the hurt it caused or the negative impact it has on our entire 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,” he added.

The messages at Parkway Central included a racial slur against Blacks on the bathroom walls as well as a statement wishing for the death of Black people, officials said.

Other racist messages were also written in a bathroom at Parkway North, though few details were available about that incident. District spokeswoman Cathy Kelly said officials are “very close” to finding the culprit. School officials do not believe the two incidents are related, she said.

Marty said in his email that the Parkway Central vandalism was a “significant violation of multiple codes of conduct” and the matter had been referred to law enforcement. He also said the student would face “severe disciplinary consequences” from the district.

The discovery of the messages prompted students to walk out in protest last week at multiple high schools. At Parkway Central, some students cursed at school administrators and others were brought to tears.

Brittanee Jackson, a 17-year-old senior at Parkway Central who participated in the walkout, called the revelations that a Black student had written the messages “embarrassing,” but said in an interview Tuesday with the Post-Dispatch that it did not diminish the student protesters’ anti-racism message.

She said she hoped administrators would do more to make sure there was a clear policy in place to address racist statements and sentiments from...

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