Middle School "Spirit Day" Becomes Day of Bigotry

Sixth graders--or middle school freshmen--are a unique crowd. No longer elementary school kids, they recreate themselves as a wiser, tougher, more independent bunch. In school though, they are no longer the seniors, but the newbies, and sometimes that means they do far-out things to earn a certain status among their new peers.


In a Chesterfield, Missouri school, however, a group of 6th graders took their need to be recognized way too far. According to a CNN.com report, the "Spirit Day" concept the kids had come up with initially included themes like "hug-a friend day" and "high-5 day," but then it turned seriously ugly. One of the days became "hit-a-Jew" day, and three Jewish students were actually hit by other students, one even slapped in the face.

The school's principal moved into action, calling an assembly and using the incident as a teaching moment. The students involved also faced diciplinary action. But was that really enough? Have your children ever faced racial or religious intolerance at school? How was it handled?

Read More >