Upper Canada College, a Canadian private school which has educated several prominent Canadian politicians and has been described as having an “illustrious history”, has had to reassure parents after a “serious” antisemitic incident took place, which has led to the police being involved.
Whilst the information available is quite sparse, a 12-year-old Jewish student apparently had antisemitic slurs and symbols. Whilst the school has emphasised that the incident was a “serious” one, it is not known if this represents one incident in a pattern of antisemitic bullying or is a one off, or whether there were other elements to the incident.
The school called a meeting with all the students in the lower years and communicated to them just how serious an antisemitic incident of any nature is.
The school issued a letter to parents saying:
“I write to inform you of a serious incident that occurred yesterday at the Prep…a student in Grade 7 returned to his locker at the end of the day to find it vandalized with antisemitic symbols and messaging. As soon as we became aware of the situation the College began an investigation.”
“We have attempted to progress the investigation swiftly, involving all the appropriate parties, including the police”
Whilst the police were involved, they have since said that despite the incident being serious, it should not be a criminal matter. Several Jewish groups have offered their support to the school in providing education relating to Jewish issues. The school’s response appears to have been an excellent one, in swiftly involving the police, communicating with parents, and having a frank, serious, but open discussion with pupils in an attempt to reassert their shared values.