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CHS Completes JV Baseball Racial Slur Investigation; Confirms Micro-Aggressions

Racial

Camas, WA — A weeklong investigation following allegations of racial slurs from Camas High School (CHS) JV baseball players against a black Skyview athlete concluded today confirming micro-aggression behavior occurred at an April 20 game. For a week, rumors have swirled about when it happened, if it happened, if it was intentional, how long the actions took place, and why the game wasn’t stopped.

A micro-aggression is a statement, action, or incident regarded as an instance of indirect, subtle, or unintentional discrimination against members of a marginalized group such as a racial or ethnic minority. CHS students have been saying on Lacamas Magazine social media sites the school does have issues with students and faculty who regularly put down racial minorities, and are frustrated administrators don’t take any action.

Camas parents who attended a 4 pm team meeting today with CHS administrators said Skyview’s claims stem from comments overheard during pre-game warmups. As the Papermakers were doing grave digger exercises they were chanting “grave diggers” as they regularly do. Skyview said the Camas players were yelling “grave n——s,” a racial insult aimed at a black Skyview baseball player.

Camas players insist they didn’t say that harmful word, but Skyview stands by their claims. Camas players felt today’s statement was rushed, and didn’t give players an opportunity to be heard. Several left the meeting feeling slighted.

Although CHS Principal Tom Morris and Athletic Director Rory Oster didn’t go into specifics in their statement, they did confirm evidence of racial slurs.

Morris and Oster issued this statement today, which was authored by Dr. Charlene Williams, Assistant Superintendent of Camas Schools:

Dear Camas Community,

You may be aware of allegations made about racist actions that took place at a JV baseball game between Skyview HS and Camas HS last week. Below is a message from Camas HS that was shared with Skyview High School athletics and administration today. 

Now that the investigation is complete, we want to share this with you in an effort to keep you informed. Please know that we cannot share information about student discipline. 

This is not how we want to be represented in our community, and we continue to be committed to our equity work.

Rory Oster, Athletic Director

Tom Morris, CHS Principal

Dear Skyview Baseball Team and Administration,

After a week of investigation, while we were not able to confirm all allegations, we do know that our players engaged in racial micro-aggressions at the April 20, 2022, JV baseball game. Their actions and the inaction of the athletes who witnessed these acts, clearly illustrate that a problem exists in our team. We are deeply sorry this occurred and apologize for the harm our players caused to Skyview team members.

Therefore, all JV games will remain canceled until the situation with Skyview and Camas JV baseball teams is resolved. Looking ahead, Camas staff will be working with its students to determine how the harm they caused can be repaired. Our plan is to engage with you to restore relationships and build a path forward. Additionally, WIAA recently created a policy around halting games when racist acts are reported; we will ensure all staff and athletes are aware of this policy and how to respond to and interrupt racist acts.

We condemn all forms of racism and will continue our work to eliminate racism in our system.

Sincerely,

Rory Oster, Athletic Director

Tom Morris, CHS Principal

Racial

3 replies
  1. Mary
    Mary says:

    I cannot even type, as my hands are shaking. The following is the message that I sent through email to Rory Oster, the atheletic director at Camas High School.

    Good Afternoon,
    My name is Mary M, and both of my girls went through the district from K-12. My girls are Chinese and have experienced many incidents of both “microagressions” as well as blatant racism while being students in your district.

    I am writing in response to your use of the term microagressions to explain the incredibly racist behavior displayed by your athletes. As a white parent of kids of color, I am acutely aware of the difference between a microagression and racism. Here are some examples from my own children’s experiences in Camas. When my child is asked by a classmate if her mom “gets mad if you don’t get all A’s”, or is told “I don’t see color”, or is asked “no, where are you REALLY from?”, or “I have a few Chinese friends”. Those are examples of microagressions. Racism happens when she is called a “chink”, or told to go back to where she came from, or is harassed with students making monkey noises at her. That is racism, and that is what is happening in Camas.

    I really hope very much that the true depth of what keeps happening here is addressed properly. The use of the incorrect term microagression perpetuates the diminishing and sweeping under the rug of the seriousness for these targeted students.

    Reply
  2. Mary
    Mary says:

    Yes, and it has been pushed forward through your publication, with no comment on how inappropriate all of this is. Take a stand.

    Reply

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