An Ohio high school is in turmoil after students—and a parent—appeared in vehemently racist social media videos using the N-word.
Now, members of the Jackson High School community, which is about an hour outside of Canton, are putting school officials on blast, claiming they need to take more responsibility for the videos and how they’ve affected students.
“I don’t think hurt is the right word,” Kenedi Satterfield, a Jackson High senior, told local outlet 19 News Cleveland. “It was definitely more than hurt. I was disgusted and concerned for my own safety and other Black kids’ safety.”
A compilation of SnapChat clips allegedly featuring white students from the school was shared Monday on Facebook by Chais Medal from Canton, Ohio.
“Share this! Let’s make it known that Jackson Local Schools – Massillon, OH is a RACIST DISTRICT,” Medal wrote.
In one clip captioned “Jackson township Ohio,” three girls scream into the camera.
“N—-!” they repeatedly yell.
“We don’t say the Black word,” laughs a woman, allegedly one of the girls’ mothers.
In another clip, a boy with dark hair and a gray Jackson hoodie looks at his phone in a locker room while the N-word is played audibly. The clip then transitions to an image of a boy wearing a white towel over his head.
“I’m in the KKK,” the image is captioned.
Another clip features a girl chanting the N-word into the camera before bursting into laughter.
“See how many times you can say it,” someone off camera is heard saying. They laugh together, and the first girl chants the slur even faster.
Another compilation with even more racist clips was shared by Facebook user Jennifer Kristie, who condemned the footage.
“U a n—-,” is captioned across a student’s face on an image. Another picture has a student’s face plastered with the slur over and over, and “What does your name mean” written at the top. There’s also a clip of a girl in black pants dancing with her back to the camera while the N-word is repeated.
It is unclear when the videos were first recorded or appeared online.
“The Jackson Local School District finds the contents of the videos reprehensible and troubling,” Superintendent Chris DiLoreto wrote in a statement to The Daily Beast. “The District does not tolerate discriminatory harassment based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or ancestry which are protected by federal civil rights laws.”
“After looking into the matter, we have found some videos did not occur during the school day, on school property, or at a location/activity sponsored by the district. As such, the district legally does not have any oversight or disciplinary authority related to those videos,” the statement continued. “To the extent any investigation shows our students violating our school policy or code of conduct, appropriate consequences will be, and have been, handed down.”
“Our school administrators look forward to continued conversations with our students and opportunities to learn and grow from these teachable moments.”
But many have not been satisfied with how the school’s handled the matter.
“What I really want to talk about is Jackson High School’s response,” Canton resident and digital creator Destinee Stark said in a Facebook video.
Stark said the district started “off strong with their policy on racial discrimination,” but ultimately didn’t want to hold its “racist students responsible for their actions.”
“To me, that is not OK,” Stark said. “Because who these people are at home is likely who they are at school… Jackson Local Schools, you have a duty to protect your Black students from people like this.”
On the school district’s Facebook page, community members condemned the videos and shared their disgust with how the school addressed the situation.
“Stop hiding behind closed doors, bring in multicultural educators, counselors and people that have lived through diverse experiences that have stories to share and have the ability to educate people of this community,” a Facebook user commented under a district post. “Stop cowardly being silent. Privileged white silence is no better than outwardly being a racist.”
“Do better, Jackson,” another Facebook user wrote. “You’re allowing racism to go unchecked and unpunished [because] it’s not on school grounds? Doesn’t your cheer team have an ethos they have to follow or be booted off for misrepresentation and their absolutely abhorrent behaviors??!!”
According to local outlet 19 News Cleveland, Jackson High students held a protest about the clips and images in the school’s lunchroom Monday.
A TikTok video uploaded by @avaa_hoops showed a crowd of students gathering in the middle of the cafeteria with signs, demanding justice.
The alleged mother of one of the students in the videos did not immediately return The Daily Beast’s request for comment Wednesday.