8th graders banned from graduation after making anti-Semitic remarks to classmate

By Allison Rubenstein,

Three 8th graders at Ogden International School are barred from their graduation ceremony as punishment for bullying a Jewish classmate with anti-Semitic comments.

The original consequence was a short suspension, but the victim’s mother, Lisa Wolf Clemente, believed the remarks to be a hate crime and fought for a more severe punishment. Clemente claimed that the students would say to her son, “You should wear striped pajamas. We’re going to put you in an oven,” as reported by the Chicago Tribune. She said he was shown pictures of concentration camps and told that that would be his fate.

Jesse Ruiz, the vice president of the Chicago Board of Education, announced at the school council meeting that the bullies would be banned from graduation, and made clear that the “ugly incident” would “not be tolerated,” according to NBC Chicago.

Ruiz added that the board would initiate a cultural awareness campaign and revise the student code of conduct.

The students have reportedly written apologies to the victim.



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