(One of my favorite comedians of all time is “Professor” Irwin Corey, “The World’s Foremost Authority.” Corey coined the term “Less is more.”)

With regard to a response to hate crimes, more is more.

The two trustee statements and quotes I read are good, the super’s is not.

The district is holding two meetings regarding the recent hate episode. The first is tonight, the second is Thursday night. Here is the announcement sent to the community by the super:

“I would like to follow-up on a communication sent yesterday regarding the actions taken by some students who created inappropriate and offensive anti-Semitic symbols, and engaged in possible underage drinking. While these actions did not occur on any school campus or school function, we condemn all acts of anti-semitism and hate in all their forms.

We continue to work with the Costa Mesa and Newport Beach Police Departments in this open and active investigation to determine the appropriate course of action.

Many times off-campus student actions, under the care of their parents and guardians, negatively impact our educational environment. We take our responsibility to students seriously when they are in our care and when their actions outside our care impact our learning environment. We do not shy away from this responsibility and we encourage our community to walk side by side with us on this journey.

We are hopeful in our ability to partner with parents and our community at-large to join us in doing what is right and instill high values in our youth.

“We appreciate our culturally diverse population and we will continue to do all we can as educators to encourage a culture of understanding, care, and inclusivity. This is a time to come together to ensure that we have a common understanding of good values and moral judgments to instill upon our youth.

In partnership with local community groups, two meetings have been scheduled for parents and students to discuss this matter. English to Spanish interpretation will be available.

  • Monday, March 4 at 6:00 p.m. at Newport Harbor High School – 600 Irvine Avenue, Newport Beach, CA 92663
  • Thursday, March 7 at 6:00 p.m. at Corona del Mar High School – 2101 Eastbluff Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660″

If you were playing “Newport-Mesa Hate Crime Response Bingo,” you can X out the following boxes:

  • Culturally diverse population
  • Educators
  • Culture of understanding
  • Inclusivity
  • Common understanding
  • Educational environment
  • Learning environment
  • Partner with parents

Please do not misunderstand my position here. I am pleased that at least two trustees have spoken clearly and directly on the matter. Well done. I am pleased that the district is holding these meetings so quickly.

I am NOT pleased at the super’s response. “Inappropriate and offensive?” That’s straight out of the School Superintendent’s Handbook, Chapter 9, page 14.

“Inappropriate and offensive” is what you say about a kid who swears at a teacher. It is not what you say about students who express support and admiration for monsters who murdered six million Jews.

Anyone attending either meeting should ask the following question:

“What are the details of your plan to prevent this from happening again?”

At the end of the day, as I wrote in the last post, unless the district develops some comprehensive, long-term, strategic plan to deal with hate and haters, this is all just a show.

Steve

 

 

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