Reputation: Pittsford students protest the county’s response to racist incidents

Hundreds of Pittsford students took a walk to protest the district’s handling of several racist incidents.

Jamie Germano, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

Pittsford Mendon High School boys and girls soccer team students are accused of using racial slurs against black opponents from Greece at Arcadia earlier this week, the latest embarrassing episode for Pittsford.

The incidents are said to have occurred during the boys ‘soccer game on Tuesday and during the girls’ soccer game on Wednesday when other Pittsford students organized a protest against racism. Both games took place at Pittsford Mendon.

On Tuesday, boy soccer players reportedly made monkey noises towards players from Black Greece Arcadia.

On Wednesday, Rumella Cameron, the mother of a Greek Arcadia soccer player, said her daughter texted her after the girls game to tell her that a Pittsford-Mendon player called one of her teammates a n —–, and the other players and people in the stands had also used insults.

“She has been playing since fourth grade and this is the first time this has ever happened,” said Cameron. “She was very upset.”

Her daughter did not go to training on Thursday and was unsure whether she would play her next game on Friday, she said.

Greece spokeswoman Laurel Heiden confirmed the nature of the allegations, saying the two districts are working together to investigate and “determine the appropriate next steps”.

Pittsford spokeswoman Nancy Wayman also said there was a joint investigation. “As with any such allegation, the school district is taking it very seriously and is conducting a thorough investigation,” she wrote in an email.

If so, the soccer team’s allegations would be the latest in a series of racist acts by Pittsford students.

The district on the east side was already in an uproar this week over a video showing a white student holding a realistic-looking airsoft gun and threatening to kill black people by describing them with a bow.

In another more recent case, middle school students exchanged text messages with the same racial slur saying that blacks should be enslaved.

More: Pittsford School offers extra security after the recent racist incidents

More: Hundreds of Pittsford students go out to protest the district’s response to racist incidents

Since 2014: Pittsford Sutherland students sing racial slurs while playing basketball

Rumella Cameron said she was eager to learn more about the outcome of the investigation and what consequences the Pittsford students might face.

At the same time, she said she was impressed to see a large group of Pittsford Mendon and Sutherland students walk out of class on Wednesday to protest the racist acts of their classmates and the district’s tepid response.

“I loved seeing that they have the courage to stand up for what’s right,” she said. “They are the ones who are there. So if they feel like it’s being swept under the rug, it’s good that they do something about it.”

Contact Author Justin Murphy at jmurphy7@gannett.com.