Swastika Drawn at Kensington Middle School Brings Denunciation, Investigation
Superintendent says people who engage in bias incidents ‘will face serious consequences’
Silver Creek Middle School
Officials at a Kensington middle school are trying to determine who was responsible for drawing a swastika on a boys’ bathroom wall this week.
The pencil drawing was found Wednesday at Silver Creek Middle School and removed by school staff, but it remains unclear who drew the swastika, according to a letter sent to families by principal Traci Townsend.
“This behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated at Silver Creek Middle School,” Townsend wrote.
Anyone found responsible will receive consequences in accordance with the school system’s Student Code of Conduct, which includes punishment ranging from community service to expulsion.
The drawing was reported to Montgomery County police, according to the principal’s letter.
A school system spokesman did not respond to requests for comment.
One of the newest schools in the 206-school Montgomery system, Silver Creek did not report any hate incidents last year, according to school system data. The school opened at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year.
Districtwide, 56 instances of hate bias were reported. Ten were reported to police.
On Monday, Superintendent Jack Smith released a YouTube video titled “Diversity Enriches All of Us,” in which he condemned acts of hate and racism.
This school year, several incidents across the county have shaken schools, from students from Walt Whitman High posting a photo in blackface to a swastika painted on the side of a Rockville high school and “N-word passes” at Winston Churchill High that “allowed” the recipient to use the racial slur. There have been similar incidents at middle and elementary schools.
“Students and staff who engage in racist acts and target others because of their skin color, gender, religion, sexual identity or culture will face serious consequences,” Smith said in the two-minute video.
Caitlynn Peetz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org