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Shelton Principal: Spitting incident at museum not racially motivated

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 14: Steel and glass create patterns and reflections inside the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture during the press preview on the National Mall September 14, 2016 in Washington, DC. Filled with exhibits and artifacts telling the story of the first Africans in the United States and their descendents, the 400,000-square-foot museum will open to the public on September 24. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

SHELTON — A Connecticut school official says she believes race was not a factor when a white student spat on a black visitor at the National Museum of African American History & Culture in Washington, D.C.

School officials in Shelton say the incident on Friday resulted in a group from Shelton Intermediate School being kicked out of the museum.

School Principal Dina Marks said in a Twitter posting Saturday morning that she believes the incident was not racially motivated. She called it “an act of stupidity, disinterest, & immaturity” and said it was “completely inappropriate.”

Marks was on the trip with students. She says a student spat over balcony and it hit a black visitor below.

School Superintendent Chris Clouet says officials will be discussing possible disciplinary measures.

Read the superintendent’s statement below:

To the Community of the Shelton Public Schools:

I am saddened to inform you that on the annual Washington D.C. trip
the group from our SIS was thrown out of the Smithsonian’s highly
regarded African American History Museum.

Why?

Because a student, a White male, spit on a Black visitor at the Museum.

This kind of action is not a reflection of who our students are, or
who we are as a community.

This is not the time or place to talk about consequences.

But this is now, regrettably, a pattern of behavior that is
disrespectful and does not serve anyone well —including the student
who acted inappropriately and embarrassed himself and his school.

Yes, we will deal with this at school.

But we need the help and support of families. Please speak to your own
children in an age-appropriate manner about our expectation of how we
treat people: Black or White, elder or young, or anyone, a child (or
adult!) may perceive as being different.

Shelton schools and the Shelton community can do better! We must!

Chris Clouet
Superintendent of Shelton Public Schools

 

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