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Saint Bernard School investigating racist graffiti inside locker

September 26, 2018

Montville — Saint Bernard School leaders are investigating racist graffiti found inside a locker and reported to school officials Tuesday.

Headmaster Donald Macrino sent a letter to parents and held a pair of meetings with high school students Wednesday, notifying them that a student on Tuesday night found nonthreatening commentary of a “vulgar and racist nature” written on the interior of a locker. 

Macrino said the locker room where the graffiti was found is used infrequently by a mix of Saint Bernard School sports teams, traveling teams and a basketball clinic. It remains unclear when the racist message was written.

“I’ve begun an internal investigation to determine if it was somebody in the school or somebody visiting,” Macrino said. “The fact that it was done is very troubling and I’d love to find out who did it. The students know that whether we find the individual or not, each individual has to fight against this sort of thing. We live in a very troubled world right now and this is exactly the kind of thing where they can show their courage.”

Macrino said the graffiti appeared to be written in pen or marker. He declined to repeat the specific language of what was written, saying it was not threatening but if it had been, officials would have made “an immediate call to police.”

Officials photographed the graffiti and removed it on Wednesday morning.

Macrino said the incident was isolated and that the school hadn’t seen similar instances in recent years.

“This is not a trend,” he said, adding that the school is proudly diverse — racially, economically and religiously.

Macrino asked parents to call the school at (860) 848-1271 if they have any information on the racially charged incident, and he asked students to come forward if they have any leads.

“I used it as a teaching opportunity,” he said. “That’s not who we are and it’s not acceptable.”

b.kail@theday.com

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