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Racist messages at Santa Rosa middle school traced to student

PIX Now Wednesday evening headlines 6/7/23
PIX Now Wednesday evening headlines 6/7/23 09:26

SANTA ROSA - On Tuesday, authorities identified a student as the mastermind behind racist and anti-Semitic messages at Rincon Valley Middle School. 

In a message to families on the district's communication platform ParentSquare, Santa Rosa City Schools Superintendent Anna Trunnell revealed that in March, several Rincon Valley Middle School students utilized a Google Slides presentation to exchange racist and hateful comments using their school email accounts.

One student took it further by adding threatening content aimed at another student.

District officials identified all students involved and determined the extent of their contributions after tracing their student accounts, but they are uncertain whether the targeted student received physical threats or if violence ensued.

The Santa Rosa Police Department initiated an investigation into the matter after a group of teachers at the middle school also received racist PowerPoint slides in their email accounts.

Trunnell declined to reveal the students' identities or the specific disciplinary actions underway.

"It can be hard for a person, most especially a young student, to face their errors and the consequences with an attitude of self-reflection if they are the topic of social media discussions. For this reason and in accordance with student privacy rights, we do not discuss student matters publicly," Trunnell wrote in the ParentSquare message. "Students can make mistakes, even very bad mistakes, and it is always our intention to assess the situation and determine how we can help them learn from their missteps so that they do not repeat them." 

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