Racist messages prompt controversy at West Jones

Updated: Sep. 25, 2020 at 5:21 PM CDT
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JONES COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - Friday morning, several parents reached out to WDAM about an incident at West Jones High School.

WDAM has learned a student was sending private messages that included racist remarks, and those messages were leaked on Instagram and prompted protests from other students.

According to Black Lives Matter Mississippi, who has had direct contact with the students, students wearing Black Lives Matter clothing at school were asked to change clothes.

WDAM spoke with a West Jones parent who says they don’t feel safe sending their child, who is Black, to school with these types of remarks being made by other students.

They also want action to be taken by the district.

“The kids just feel targeted you know. They’re tired. They’re tired of it to say the least. And the West Jones faculty and staff is trying to suppress their voice,” said Jeremy Breidges, with BLM Mississippi.

WDAM reached out to Superintendent Tommy Parker who responded with this statement.

“A student at West Jones High School had a private message that was made public by another student via social media. The post contained some very derogatory and racially insensitive language and contained some very inappropriate statements in regard to the recent riots across our nation. The post caused some concerns for the school administration, but students attended classes today without incident. The Jones County School District has strict policies against discrimination and harassment in any form. This incident remains under investigation.”

Parker told WDAM one student wearing a Black Lives Matter shirt and another wearing a Donald Trump mask went home voluntarily after the incident.

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