FRANKLIN (CBS) – Franklin High School administrators, with the help of Franklin Police School and civil rights officers, are investigating an incident that occurred Thursday night during the men’s college baseball game at Franklin High. School.
The principal, and a letter to parents in the school community, claims that a group of Franklin fans watched the senior night game along the fence yelling racist, homophobic and anti-Semitic slurs at Sharon’s baseball players in the outfield.
“We denounce such behavior and are outraged,” Principal Joshua Hannah said in a letter to the families. “Our hearts go out to the Sharon community. There is no place for such behavior in our schools and school events. This behavior is highly inconsistent with our core values in the inclusive culture we are committed to creating at Franklin High School. “
Some of Franklin’s elders who weren’t at the game were shocked by the allegations. “I think it’s especially awful that it can happen in the present day,” said one student.
“Everyone is friends… It’s sad to hear that. Everyone is supportive of the games, but if they go a little too far it’s a little worrying, because everyone should be welcome at Franklin, ”said senior Sameen Shaik.
Other students, however, believe that bullying like the baseball game incident is a more pervasive problem. “People say it’s a joke, but many people don’t take it as a joke because they hear it every day and have to face it every day, and it’s so disheartening to hear it’s literally happening the right way here,” said Zachary Abbi, a senior in high school. “We’ve had to have many, many assemblies about it, and it seems like nothing works and that’s the sad part.”
The New England Anti-Defamation League is helping the school investigate the incident. In a statement, the ADL told WBZ it was concerned about the growing number of racist, homophobic and anti-Semitic incidents reported on the track and field fields.
“This is indicative of a growing problem of toxic culture in many locker rooms, soccer field this week, baseball diamonds,” said ADL New England Assistant Director Peggy Shukur.
Students like Abbi hope the investigation has healed some responsibilities. “I just hope people become more tolerant and more educated and take responsibility,” Abbi said.