Wilton leaders team up to tackle anti-Semitism

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WILTON -

After the third anti-Semitic incident at a Wilton middle school in a month, community and religious leaders are teaming up to stop more from happening.

On two separate instances, someone scrawled swastikas in boys bathrooms at Middlebrook Middle School. Then on Thursday, someone posted a note on a student's locker that read "Jews will burn."

"This incident is reprehensible, and we need to acknowledge the pain and suffering it has caused," says Wilton Superintendent Kevin Smith.

First Selectman Lynne Vanderslice called the latest incident ugly, unacceptable and wrong Friday, when officials held a meeting with parents at the school.

Some people came from other communities to weigh in.

"There's been a string of anti-Semitic crimes happening, and we just want to figure out what's being done to fight this," says Michael Munzenon, of Weston.

In response to the incidents, the school will form a committee alongside local and religious leaders to create an action plan to prevent instances of hate speech from spreading.

One of the first steps may be reworking school curriculum to include lessons from the Anti-Defamation League, which opposes anti-Semitism and other forms of hate.

Police gave no updates on whether they've identified a suspect in the latest incident Friday, but the ADL says if it turns out to be a student or child, they should be forgiven and educated.

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