PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Students at Oregon City High School walked out of class on Thursday morning in protest of recent racist incidents.
Students gathered in the school’s courtyard around 9:30 a.m. but did not leave school property. A video from inside the school shows a large number of students participating in the protest. Students went back to class without issue about an hour later.
A tweet earlier this week started off a chain of events that lead to the walkout.
The tweet was a picture of some OCHS students standing with a sign that said “Welcome back to the farm n*****” on it and a cartoon of a KKK member.
Next, another student tweeted a photo of a sign she says was left on her doorstep. N’dea Flye tells KOIN 6 News the sign said “Go back to cotton picking n****, black lives doesn’t matter.”
OSHS superintendent Larry Didway addressed the first sign in a letter to families:
Dear Oregon City School District Family:
The school’s student body is holding a “Gathering for Unity” candlelight vigil on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
Earlier this morning, a social media posting was sent to our anonymous tip line. The post pictured a group of youth holding a sign with a drawing and handwritten message including a racial epitaph. The picture was taken in an Oregon City commercial parking lot.
The language and images in this social media post were appalling and unacceptable. Incidents like these underscore the importance of ongoing community dialogue related to race, language, and bias. We are addressing these topics internally with the appropriate students and staff as a part of our commitment to provide a safe and respectful learning environment for all students.
This incident is also an opportunity for families to discuss the dangers and potential repercussions from hurtful and inappropriate online communication. We appreciate your ongoing support.