COLLIERVILLE, Tenn. — Collierville's new $94 million high school has only been open for a few days, but school officials are already dealing with offensive graffiti that was drawn on a student's desk.
The vandalism includes a crude racial slur. School officials said they were made aware Monday night after students discovered it.
This comes just a year after a racist slur was left on a pastor's car outside the old Collierville High School.
Pastor Linwood Dillard says his daughter texted him and his wife a picture of the n-word written on her desk on Monday.
"Of course she's upset, annoyed and all of that. But it's disappointing to us that she's seeing this so much at such a young age," he said.
The 15-year-old found the racist slur during fourth period.
Dillard says his daughter told her teacher, but he decided to also post it on social media to get the school's attention and to send a message to the community.
"It just let us know we still have a lot of work to do, and we still have to teach our children."
"A brand new high school in Collierville but yet we are fighting the same old demon of racism!!!!!" one parent wrote on Facebook.
The district released a statement Tuesday saying that two tenth-grade friends — one white and one African-American — were responsible. Both accepted responsibility and were disciplined, the district said.
"Collierville Schools in no way condones the behaviors of the students involved in this incident," the district said. "Their actions reflect neither the values of Collierville Schools nor those of the greater Collierville community."
"The word itself is so offensive that if I were to walk in and see that, whether it was targeted to me or not, it let's me know there's a problem," said Dillard.
On Tuesday, his family and other pastors met with school administrators about the incident. He says the meeting was partially productive.
"We can't sweep this under the rug. This is not funny."
Dillard hopes to create an orientation of some sort where the students can learn about racism and respect.
He also wants to speak with the superintendent and city officials about taking serious actions, so no more kids have to face bigotry and hatred.
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