Farmington school district addresses racist notes found in student locker

Body: 

This Wednesday, March 8, Farmington Area Public Schools Superintendent Jay Haugen released a statement to ISD 192 families informing them that racist and derogatory notes were found in a student locker at Riverview Elementary School.

Haugen’s statement said school administrators are investigating the source of the notes and will take disciplinary action according to district policies.

“As a school district and community, we take these matters extremely seriously,” the statement said. “I want to share with you my personal commitment to creating safe and respectful schools for each of your children. Racist words and behaviors will not be tolerated.”

Haugen said the notes were clearly targeted toward a specific individual. They were not permanent and did not damage the locker in any way.

Riverview Elementary principal Kimberly Grengs and the school’s counselor spoke with students in the affected grade level on Thursday and offered support to any students who wanted to talk about the issue further.

Haugen said the incident impacts the entire community and there is a greater conversation to be had. He said ISD 192 principals, counselors and cabinet members will meet today to create a plan for addressing these types of issues head-on in every school in the district, and he hopes to engage the larger community in the discussion as well.

“The good news of this,” Haugen said, “is I’m confident Farmington will rally around not only this student, but all students … That's very much what Farmington is.”