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Swastikas, racial slurs found at Santaluces High School in Lantana

Posted: 8:30 AM, May 10, 2017
Updated: 2017-05-10 18:48:45-04
Swastikas found at Santaluces HS in Lantana
Swastikas found at Santaluces HS in Lantana

Palm Beach County school officials said swastikas and racial slurs were found Wednesday morning painted at Santaluces High School in Lantana.

Spokeswoman Kathy Burstein said staff saw the graffiti when they arrived for classes and immediately painted it over before students arrived.

"They were already painted over but the fact is that it [happened] was kind of a low blow for the last day of our high school," said Alan McGonigle, a senior at the school.

Student James Noel, also a senior, added, "It was pretty dumb to be honest, no reason to do that."

Burstein says the graffiti was on exterior walls near the gym and courtyard common areas. School police are investigating and reviewing surveillance video.

Principal Tameka Robinson sent the following message to students' parents about the incident. 

Santaluces was vandalized overnight and offensive graffiti, including swastikas and racial slurs, were painted on our campus walls. The graffiti was found when I and other administrators arrived on campus this morning, and we are now working with School Police to review surveillance video and find the people responsible.

Any expression or action by students that attempts to disrespect, discredit or harm anyone else on our campus will not be tolerated. Once we find the person or people responsible, they could face criminal charges, as well as serious punishment as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct.

I encourage you to use this incident as an opportunity speak with your children about the importance of being respectful of all other students and staff members in the school community.  If you or your child have any information about the individual(s) responsible for this act of vandalism and harassment, please contact me immediately. Thank you for your continued support of Santaluces High School.

Yael Hershfield, the regional director of the Anti-Defamation league, says parents and teachers must do more to stop these disturbing messages from appearing at schools.  

“Up to the adults to teach students this is unacceptable,” said Hershfield. “The impact that the symbols have on the community, the lessons of the holocaust and why that symbol should never appear again.”