Westford Academy students banned from games following racial slurs yelled at opponents

WESTFORD — If you check Westford Academy’s website, you’ll count more than a dozen games between Tuesday and Wednesday, all of which Westford students will not be allowed to attend.

Westford Academy’s principal sent an email to parents Monday asking them to talk to their student about “racially charged taunting language” spewed toward an opposing player during a girls basketball game.

“I just find that really disappointing,” said student Arinder Gudavalli. “Especially since we really normally have a good student section at our games.”

Students who were at the game Friday night say there was one specific Wayland High School player who was the target of the racial slurs coming from Westford’s student section.

“I saw them getting talked to afterward,” said student Noah Michaud. “I think it was really unfortunate that that had to happen and that we have to have this discussion.”

The principal has now banned students from attending games on Tuesday and Wednesday,

“As parents, we want that we want everything to be fair and sometimes we don’t get that,” said parent Rasy An. It kind of sets in my opinion not a good example but at the same time it must be done to stop students from doing things like that especially harassment and discrimination.

So is the punishment enough?

“Definitely education and group meetings are needed, said An.

In the letter the principal says in part:

“Our work with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion continues to be a primary focus of our professional development, and we will continue to educate our students regarding these important topics.”

“Personally, I don’t think this is going to stop this from happening in the future,” said Gudavalli. “It’s just something we have to watch out for. I think there are enough people who care now they go to the game to see who said this and who does do this or try to do it in the future will get shamed for this.”

We reached out to the superintendent from both schools for a statement and to ask if there will be any specific education or counseling done to help ensure this does not continue, but we have not yet heard back.

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