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Hamilton elementary school investigating ‘slurs’ and ‘disturbing’ images during online class

A HWDSB Elementary school apologized to guardians on Thursday after racial slurs and graphic images were heard and displayed during a online class with students. Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press

A Hamilton elementary school says it’s investigating an “inappropriate” incident that occurred during a remote learning session on Thursday.

The principal for Collegiate Avenue Elementary School says the matter involved the usage of anti-Black racial slurs and inappropriate language as well as disturbing and graphic images in an online session.

Read more: Hamilton’s public school board stops reporting COVID-19 cases amid return to remote learning

“We are investigating the incident,” Lisa Barzetti said in a letter to guardians.

“We are sorry and deeply disturbed that this occurred. This is unacceptable. Online harassment is not tolerated in our schools or communities and we will be reporting this incident to the police.”

As of Friday afternoon, Hamilton police say they have yet to receive the complaint.

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Hamilton Wentworth District School Board (HWDBS) spokesperson Shawn McKillop told Global News that board believes the incident is an isolated one.

“We are confident that our enhanced security measures are in place,” McKillop said.

“Families should know this is not a regular experience in remote learning and we are taking this very seriously. Our IT staff are reviewing.”

McKillop could not confirm whether the alleged perpetrator was affiliated with the school or the HWDSB.

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