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Is Student Prejudice On The Rise?

While prejudice and intolerance are nothing new, there is a growing trend of students boldly expressing prejudiced and even racist ideas, made more accessible by social media. A sampling of student expressions of prejudice appears below. 

Student prejudice can be prevented! For information on how to prevent and respond effectively to expressions of prejudice, please visit our Education page. 

  • A group of students turned spirit day into "thug day" in Hedwig Village, TX. 
  • A student protest at a Flossmoor, IL high school after two White students wore blackface and disparaged Black girls.
  • Outrage among parents in Pittsford, NY over student use of the n-word, telling a Korean student to go back to Mexico, insensitivity toward Black History Month, and more.
  • blackface cake baked in culinary class by White high school students in Portland, OR.
  • Student protests of a racist video circulating in a private school in the Bronx, NY.
  • Threats of violence toward Blacks and Hispanics on social media and a threat to shoot up a school, both in Charlottesville, VA.

  • The suspension of two students who installed racist hot spot names that appeared on students' phones during an assembly in Snohomish, WA.
  • swastika carved into a bathroom stall at a private school in Cherry Creek Village, CO.
  • 10 female high school students in Southlake, TX participating in a racist chant that was posted on social media.
  • A Poplar Bluff, MO student who wore a KKK hood in class as part of a presentation on the constitution.
  • White students gave an African American student a note with the n-word on it at an Oswego, OR junior high school.
  • A White student in Washington County, UT who posted a photo of herself with a noose  around her neck and x'es on her eyes with the caption, "Happy National N***** Day."

  • A group of White students in Deptford Township, NJ who wore Confederate flag shirts and used racial slurs in response to classmates protesting racial inequality.
  • A Black honor student and his brother who withdrew from a Gloucester County, NJ Christian school after finding racist death wishes in his locker.
  • Swastikas and Nazi slogans written on bathroom walls and emailed anonymously to a senior high school and junior high school in Davis, CA.
  • A White student in Lake in the Hills, IL who called a Black student the n-word, threw a banana at him and told him to pick it up, and then progressed to posting threatening videos online.
  • A White student's texting of racist jokes and subsequent attack by an African American student after his return from suspension in Clovis, CA.
  • Two incidents at a Coatesville, PA school: a dark-skinned doll hanged from the ceiling in a locker room and a photo of White students behind pumpkins carved with "KKK" and swastikas. 
  • A White student in Collierville, TN who painted the f-word and the n-word on an African American pastor's car, saying afterward that it was meant to be funny, not racist.
  • Two White Quakertown, PA middle school students who yelled racial slurs at an opposing football team's cheerleaders and threw rocks at the team's bus.
  • White students' texting of the n-word, which prompted a scuffle and a protest at a Washington Township, NJ, school.
  • Offensive social media posts involving images of slavery by White students from a Richardson, TX high school, in advance of their school’s football game with a rival school.  
  • A football player in North Carolina who used the n-word against a rival team's player.
  • Racial slurs and swastikas scrawled throughout a high school, with some White students laughing posing for pictures in front of the "white power" graffiti, in Hedwig Village, TX.

  • Reports by students in York, PA of racial harassment, including a student yelling, "White power," in the run up to the presidential election. 
  • Anti-gay, anti-Mexican, and anti-Black, and anti-Jewish statements and drawings found in a Newtown, Pennsylvania school's bathrooms and in a student's backpack.
  • White North Bend, Oregon students shouting “Go back to Mexico!” at an 11-year-old Colombian American student and others telling racist jokes.
  • Five White high school football players in Creston, IA, who donned white hoods, burned a cross, and flew a confederate flag. 
  • A group of White students in Warrensburg, MO, who turned their backs and held up a Trump sign when a predominantly Black visiting basketball team entered the gym. 



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Our Connections staff development session offers skills for preventing and responding to student expressions of prejudice.