Westwood students received ‘offensive and racist’ messages airdropped

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Schools

The school will now have stricter enforcement of its “no cellphones during school hours” policy.

Westwood Thurston Middle School principal Michael Redmon sent a letter to parents saying “highly inappropriate” messages had been sent to several students. (AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File)

Several students at Thurston Middle School in Westwood have been subjected to “highly inappropriate, offensive and racist messages from anonymous users” sent via AirDrop to their iPhones, Principal Michael Redmon said in a letter to parents on Wednesday.

Redmon described the incidents in the letter, The Boston Globe reported, saying that several students received messages from an iPhone with a username alias that included the n-word.

He also said a student was given a pseudonymous username that used an offensive phrase about President Joe Biden, the World reported, and a student received a “mean image intended to mock the recipient”.

“The recipients of these messages communicated their feelings of anger and anger at having been targeted in this hurtful way and said they felt violated by the use of anonymous messaging capabilities used to offend themselves and others,” wrote Redmon to the parents.

“These hateful posts were clearly intended to put others down and cause disruption – they have no place in our community.”

Users must be within 30 feet from a recipient to AirDrop something.

the World reported that Redmon said the school’s internet system cannot prevent AirDropped messages, but students can disable the feature on their phones.

To avoid other cases, the World reported, the school will begin to strengthen enforcement of its policy prohibiting the use of cell phones during class hours.

“In these incidents, cell phone use went from distraction to destruction,” Redmon wrote.

the World reported that Redmon said the school is still investigating who sent the messages, and if the sender is a student, they will be punished.

An incident meeting for parents is scheduled for May 4, World reported.

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