New Jersey

New Jersey Middle School Investigates Student Nazi Salute in Classroom

School administrators say they're responding after a small group of students were caught using the verbal Nazi salute and gesture inside a middle-school classroom. 

Maplewood Middle School Dana Crocker Gronau sent a letter to parents and students informing them alerting them to the incident.

She said the school's harassment, bullying and intimidation specialists are working with administrators to take the appropriate responsive steps.

She said she considers the incident to be a teachable moment to reinforce the school's belief in inclusiveness.

"At Maplewood Middle School, we are committed to fostering an inclusive environment where students can grow, learn, and participate in society as informed and caring citizens," she wrote. 

Gronau said the school will add specific anti-bias discussions to advisory sessions and create opportunities for eighth graders to participate in these discussions.

Administrators will conduct a meeting with faculty members to remind them of the importance of being vigilant and responding to incidents of harassment, intimidation or bullying. Included in the letter were two links to useful resources for conversations about hate and tolerance with students and children.

"Words are powerful and we must teach our students that we should not use our words to hurt others," Gronau wrote.

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