The Queens school where a Jewish teacher was forced to take shelter during a riot by anti-Israel students saw antisemitic graffiti earlier this, the New York Post reported.
Swastikas and "Hail Hitler" were found written near the location of students' lockers in Hillcrest High School in February.
Faculty told the Post that the school administration was slow to respond to the incident and even to remove the graffiti. “It was immediately brought to the principal’s attention and he did nothing about it,” said one faculty member.
When the graffiti was not removed in a timely manner, school staff called their colleagues, and complaints were filed with the NYPD and Special Commissioner of Investigation for city schools.
The New York City Department of Education ordered the graffiti removed. In addition, the culprit, a 14-year-old student, was identified on security footage, after the principal had insisted that the act was not caught by the school's security cameras.
Two weeks ago, about 400 students rioted for several hours in Hillcrest High School against a teacher who attended a pro-Israel protest. The teacher was forced to take shelter in a locked office as the mob attempted to force entry into her classroom.
Students recorded the riot and set it to Arabic music and anti-Israel captions, and added slurs against the teacher. Parts of the school were vandalized as well.
NYPD both sent officers to the school and readied its counterterrorism units for operation.
The teacher commented “I have been a teacher for 23 years in the New York City public school system — for the last seven at Hillcrest High School. I have worked hard to be supportive of our entire student body and an advocate for our community, and was shaken to my core by the calls to violence against me that occurred online and outside my classroom last week. No one should ever feel unsafe at school — students and teachers alike,” she added.
“It’s my hope in the days ahead we can find a way to have meaningful discussions about challenging topics with respect for each other’s diverse perspectives and shared humanity,” the teacher said in her statement. “Unless we can learn to see each other as people we will never be able to create a safe learning community.”
The riot was eventually brought under control, and the teacher was escorted from the building by police.
Hate messages against her continued on social media.