Four Catholic students have been expelled following two separate incidents; in the first incident, two seniors brought a Confederate flag to school as part of an event and in the second incident, a young woman posted a blackface photo on social media, and another young woman left a racially charged comment on that photo.
“St. Anthony’s will always demand acceptance and respect for all races, religions and cultures,” said Gary Cregan, the principal of the school. The first incident happened on April 9, when two young men brought the symbol of treason and slavery to a school event. The flag was immediately taken away and the students were suspended. Cregan sent a letter to the parents stating that the flag was, “designed to revive past injustices or to inflame discrimination or racial intolerance is completely unacceptable and profoundly offensive.”
This outrage inflamed tensions, and Brother Cregan asked the students not to use social media to stir trouble. However, two days later, on Friday, one young woman posted a picture of herself in blackface, and another posted a racially insensitive remark on that picture. While the initial punishment for the students who brought the flag was a 10 day suspension, Brother Cregan said that he worried about campus security and expelled all four of the students.
According to the New York Daily News:
This is a fairly cosmopolitan school; Brother Cregan is upset that these incidents have tarnished the school’s image. “I do believe that the school’s reputation has been damaged from this,” he said.
You can watch CBS report on the event below: