Swastika found in Jewish student's locker at Lincoln Park school

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A Jewish student at Oscar Mayer Magnet School in Lincoln Park found a swastika and other derogatory symbols in his locker, according to school officials.

"It is sad that we live in a world where something like this can happen. The community won't stand for it. We are going to make it clear through education and standing up that it is not right," said T.J. Tzur, a parent.

In a letter to parents Wednesday, school officials said "This is deplorable and we denounce it! We have removed these vicious symbols of oppression and genocide."

CPS released a statement that said "Chicago Public Schools is committed to creating safe and welcoming school environments and the district is taking immediate steps to ensure the student and school community have the support needed to heal following this despicable act. We are committed to promoting school environments that are welcoming and supportive of all cultures, and hateful incidents will not be tolerated."

According to the Anti-Defamation League, anti-Semitic incidents in schools across the country are up dramatically.

The ADL in Chicago said it has reached out to Oscar Mayer administrators.

"A swastika delivered to a Jewish kid is a sign of intimidation, of fear and basically saying we don't want you to be a part of this community. It's incredibly jolting to get that type of message sent to you," said Lonnie Nasatir, the ADL Midwest Regional Director.

The school is planning to host cultural sensitivity activities for students.

"This is actually my kids' first year at the school. We actually came from a Jewish school and I actually think they handled it very well," said parent Danielle Weingarten. "You are going to find these things everywhere. It's all about how you handle it."
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