Racial slur incident being investigated at Madison middle school

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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)-- Less than a year after Velma Hamilton Middle School teacher resigned after using a racial slur, another staff member is being investigated after reportedly using a racial slur around a student.

Principal John Burkholder notified families of the incident involving a substitute teacher in a letter sent on Thursday. He said it is being investigated and the substitute is on leave and not at school.

“While I cannot get into details, I want to emphasize that racial slurs have no place in our school,” said Burkholder. “We will remain focused on supporting our students, and protecting our students from harm. I also want to ask for your partnership. We will remain focused on supporting our students and making our school climate safe and caring for all students, and ask for your help in that work.”

Burkholder said the student is receiving support and are taking the next appropriate steps.

NBC15 has asked MMSD for a statement about the incident, but is still awaiting a response. This story will be updated if they release one.

On Nov. 16 2018, a teacher resigned after using the N-word with a student at the middle school. Following that incident, the school district recommended the Teaching Tolerance websiteto help families and students discuss the incident.

Dear Hamilton Families,I’m writing to inform you of a serious incident at school recently. The incident involves a substitute using a racial slur around a student. We are investigating the incident, and that staff member is on leave and not at school. Our top priority has been to support the student involved and take the appropriate next steps, and that is where our focus has been.While I cannot get into details, I want to emphasize that racial slurs have no place in our school. We will remain focused on supporting our students, and protecting our students from harm. I also want to ask for your partnership. We will remain focused on supporting our students and making our school climate safe and caring for all students, and ask for your help in that work. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me by email, phone, or by stopping by our Hamilton main office.

Sincerely,

John BurkholderPrincipal