BOSTON (CBS) – Mayor Marty Walsh is promising to look into allegations of racism at Boston’s most elite exam school, Boston Latin.
“We have to look at what’s happening district wide. We have to make sure that this doesn’t happen,” said Walsh. “The experiences that kids have in our schools shouldn’t be racism.”
He’s responding to a student group’s accusations that the Boston Latin High School administration failed to protect students who brought racism concerns to the headmaster’s office. The group calls itself B.L.A.C.K. It stands for Black Leaders Advocating for Change and Knowledge.
They say for too long, they’ve been trying to get their message out. They made a plea on YouTube asking people to post examples of racism.
The video prompted tweets like, “#BlackatBLS, People of color are the majority at every other Boston Public High School except the one with the most opportunity.”
As a result, the headmaster agreed to meet with them Friday, and Boston’s School Superintendent is now investigating.
Local civil rights groups applaud administrators for reacting, but say it took too long. They’re demanding an independent third-party investigation. “It does have a negative impact in terms of their learning if they feel that they’re in an environment that’s not safe,” said the president of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, Darnell Williams.
B.L.A.C.K. students put out a second YouTube message Sunday night. “Thank you administration,” they said. “Sixteen months after BLACKatBLS handed the binder of tweets to our headmaster, many students from the community of color at BLS felt as though nothing was done to address this issue to the whole BLS community, and sadly these issues continue to persist.”