The incident at Severna Park High School was captured on video.
Ann Arundel County, Maryland — The principal of Severna Park High School in Maryland sent a letter to families Monday after learning of a video showing a student bullying a classmate with a disability.
Principal Lindsey Abruzzo claims a video of the incident was airdropped to several students and staff around 1:30 pm Monday.
Abruzzo said, “In the video, one of the students talks to another student during lunch and begins using language that is not inappropriate. The student’s language includes racial disdain and insults for people with special disabilities.” It contains discriminatory words and phrases that also imply a threat of harm to the receiving student, who is also a student with special needs.”
She then went on to call this student’s behavior unacceptable. Especially in school settings where part of their mission is to develop kind, receptive and inclusive students.
Abruzzo said he is in contact with the student victim of the incident and his family and is continuing to investigate the incident captured on video. She’s still working to confirm the identities of the person who took the video and the person who airdropped it.
“We talk to students as soon as possible, not only to gather information that may help our investigation, but more importantly, to tell them that such behavior is simply not OK. We cannot tolerate such behavior and will take aggressive and appropriate disciplinary action against any student who engages in such conduct,” Abruzzo said. .
“Simply put, we are better than this,” he added.
Principal Abruzzo concluded his letter by thanking the many students and faculty who were quick to inform them of the situation. She says their decisive and swift actions and their anger at the situation indicate that the actions shown in the video do not reflect the school’s total student population.
School counselors and student services teams are available for students in need.
Parents are instructed to encourage their children to immediately report any potentially unsafe situation to a responsible adult.
Safety concerns may also be reported anonymously to the Safe Schools Maryland Tip Line at 833-MD-B-SAFE. The line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Callers to that line can remain anonymous.
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