CONIFER, Colo. — Students recently discovered a swastika painted on a playground at West Jefferson Middle School in the Conifer area. According to a spokesperson for Jefferson County Public Schools, the county sheriff’s office is investigating.
In a letter to West Jefferson families, Principal David Schoenhals said parents reported that a couple of students found the swastika painted on the playground at the start of Thanksgiving break. The school’s security cameras were unable to get video of the person or people responsible, Schoenhals said.
The Nazi image was removed before students returned the following Monday.
Schoenhals included the following in his message to families:
“I want you to know that the actions of this person or group of people do not reflect the pride we take in our campus and the safe learning environment that we strive for at West Jefferson Middle School. WJMS continues to be a place where all of our students are respected and are expected to respect one another. Hateful graffiti is a deplorable act which we denounce. Throughout our school, we will continue to teach about the values of respect and kindness, especially as they relate to how we treat people with backgrounds or belief and value systems that are different from our own.”
The principal also asked those with information to contact the school immediately. He apologized to any students who may have seen the symbol.
In early 2017, a West Jefferson eighth grader’s family filed a civil rights complaint after she allegedly received anti-Semitic comments. The family said the school and the district failed to do anything about bullying after other students said a number of hateful statements regarding Jews.