ark Hill School District Superintendent Dr. Jeanette Cowherd spoke during announcements at the board meeting to address concerns that the district isn’t doing anything about what happened at Park Hill South High School.
High schoolers at Park Hill South in Kansas City allegedly recently circulated a racist petition that called to bring slavery back.
“This racist incident is unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” Dr. Cowherd said at the board meeting.
The Park Hill South High School principal, Kerrie Herren, recently informed parents via email that a racist incident had occurred, but did not go into detail. Herren said the incident was brought to the administration’s attention by students.
“We found out today about some unacceptable and racist statements that some students posted online during a school-related activity,” Herren said in the email. “We are outraged, hurt and saddened this occurred in our community. This is not who we want to be at Park Hill South. Our differences make us stronger, and we will not tolerate discrimination or harassment.”
Nicole Kirby, communications director for the Park Hill School District, has said privacy laws prohibit the district from sharing discipline information, Dr. Cowherd did share the details of district policies that prohibit discrimination and harassment and say that “students who violate this policy will be subject to discipline, which may include suspension or expulsion.”
Cowherd said that the Park Hill School District has a problem that must be addressed.
Last week, Dr. Cowherd updated the school board that the district is in the process of identifying experts to partner with Park Hill to address this problem with specific action steps to make schools a more safe, inclusive place to learn. She said she was looking for a long-range, sustainable plan.