School officials in Medway, Massachusetts, say they are investigating a racist incident that occurred following a high school girls basketball game against Wellesley on Friday night.
Administrators at Medway High School said they were notified Friday night by Wellesley High School about an incident that occurred after a girls varsity basketball game earlier that evening. "It was reported that two Medway High School students knelt and raised their fists in the air – a gesture typically associated with racial justice movements – at a student of color from Wellesley as the student passed them. No words were exchanged," Medway school officials said in a statement released Tuesday.
Medway Superintendent Armand Pires and High School Principal John Murray said they launched an internal investigation as soon as they received the report and have been in contact with their counterparts at the Wellesley Public School. They also said they contacted Medway police and reported the matter to the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association.
Pires and Murray said they have identified the individuals involved and are taking "appropriate measures in partnership with the Wellesley schools" aimed at repairing the harm caused by the incident and "fostering reconciliation" between all of the students involved.
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“We work to create an atmosphere where all students – whether they attend Medway High School or are visiting our school – feel safe, supported and welcomed," Medway schools said in their statement. "This type of behavior is unacceptable and has no place in our schools, at school events or in our community.”
Wellesley school officials sent a letter to parents in their district Tuesday informing them of an "upsetting incident" over the weekend involving one of their student athletes.
"Following an away game, one of the members of a Wellesley High School team was the target of a racist incident instigated by two students from Medway High School, which was hosting the game," the letter said.
"Our student reported, and the principal of Medway High has corroborated, that the students approached our student in the parking lot after the game, knelt down on one knee, and raised a fist in the air in a way that was clearly an act of racism. The Medway principal and members of his staff have expressed sincere concern and regret for the students’ behavior and have worked closely with us to gather the facts and take quick action. The two students have been identified, and Medway administrators are addressing their behavior."
Wellesley school officials said they have taken "appropriate steps," including meeting with the victim and their family, and are only offering details about the incident with their support.
"We commend our student for immediately reporting this incident to their coach, which allowed all parties to quickly work over the weekend to both investigate the behavior and bring it to light," school officials added in their statement.