Wednesday, February 15, 2017


An incident described as a "Nazi gesture and verbal salute" between a "small group of students" reportedly occurred today at Maplewood Middle School, according to Principal Dara Gronau, who informed parents of the situation in an email today.

She said it is being reviewed as a case of Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying (HIB) and sparking increased focus on anti-bias efforts.

Her note included few other details, but stated that:

The MMS Leadership Team conducted an investigation. We have responded to this matter as an incident of Harassment, Bullying and Intimidation (HIB). HIB specialists are working with us to take appropriate responsive steps.
We see this as an important teachable moment, which demonstrates our need to reinforce our belief in the importance of inclusiveness.  We will take the following actions:
  • We will make adjustments to upcoming advisory sessions to include specific anti-bias discussions.
  • We will create opportunities for 8th graders to participate in these discussions.
  • We will conduct a meeting with the faculty reminding them of the importance of responding to and being vigilant about incidents of harassment, intimidation, and bullying in our school.  
  • Continue to promote anti-bias professional development available and accessible to staff. 
See the entire email HERE. 

This follows two previous anti-semitic incidents at South Orange Middle School in 2016. Those included the use of offensive language by students last May and the finding of a swastika in a bathroom in December.

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