Anti-Semitic remarks keep students from graduation ceremony

Three 8th graders will not graduate on stage because they made anti-Semitic remarks to another student.

That happened at Ogden International School in Chicago’s West Town neighborhood.

Friday is the last day of school there and 8th grade graduation is set for Saturday morning.

But three graduates won’t be there because they bullied a Jewish classmate.

They were originally just going to be suspended, but that was changed to a harsher punishment of missing graduation.

The victim’s mother, Lisa Wolf Clemente, appears to be more upset with school principal Joshua Vander Jagt.

“It’s not about my son,” Clemente said.  “What I’m really upset about is the way it was handled.”

“(Vander Jagt) continues to lie and lie and lie.  It’s disturbing.  It’s disgusting.  It’s a slap to the Jewish community’s face.  Stand up and say you didn’t recognize and then we can move on.  Don’t say you acted immediately because you did not,” Clemente said.

Clemente says Principal Vander Jagt further mishandled this case with a safety plan that requires security escorts for her son.

At a public hearing Thursday, she noted that her son was the one under threat and is not a threat to others.

She says her 14 year old son went through months of anti-Semitic rants at school and online.

She says he was also taunted with pictures from concentration camps.

Chicago Board of Education Vice President Jesse Ruiz attended the hearing and says more action will be taken if necessary.

School district officials say the students behind the bullying wrote letters of apology to Clemente’s son.

The incidents happened as the students were learning about the holocaust.

6 comments

    • krystal

      I feel sorry for this woman's son.
      Not because he had some awful insults thrown at him . But because he is now possibly tagged "that poor unfortunate kid with the hyper-sensitive mom." The son is going to start his freshman year in H.S. with this around his neck and being labeled the brittle wimp who cries to his mommy.

      If my kids were his classmates or neighbors, I would ask them to PLEASE just have no contact with him for fear of them inadvertently saying something that would set this family off. High school can be very lonely and kids with thicker skin shave a better chance..

    • P. Davis

      Bullies such as these kids, should never be underestimated for their ability to do more harm to others! They are sick individuals, who are mostly insecure and immature!

  • Pam Davis

    If these bullies are going to college next year, I hope these colleges will become aware of their actions! Once an Anti-Semite, always an Anti-Semite!

  • Duh

    It's Wednesday and Yahoo local news s still showing stories from Friday. What do they think news is supposed to be? Yahoo new stinks.

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