Cardinal Newman Promises Changes After Student Makes Racist Video

A16-year-old former student was seen in a video making racist comments towards black people and later made threats to shoot up the school.

Cardinal Newman Promises Changes After Student Makes Racist Video

Cardinal Newman School in South Carolina is promising school-wide changes after a 16-year-old student made a racist and threatening video.

In the video, a former student loads a long gun and describes his hatred for black people. He then fires his gun at a box of Michael Jordan sneakers, “the favorite pair of shoes for a black man.”

At a town hall meeting on Thursday, Principal Rober Loia promised a crowd of more than 350 people that student safety is a priority, reports Greenville News.

Changes coming to the school include:

  • Active shooter training to all faculty
  • Law enforcement on campus at the beginning and end of the school day for two weeks
  • Increased school security (i.e. athletic events)
  • Possibly adding gates to school’s entrance
  • A threat assessment from the Richland County Sheriff’s Department
  • Develop a “systematic approach to keep our finger on the pulse of student wellbeing” using existing psychological service
  • Implement faculty diversity training and a diverse speaker series throughout the year

“This has been a difficult moment for our campus,” Loia said. “It’s made us worry about our children’s lives. It’s been especially hurtful to our African American community.”

Parents were unhappy with how the school handled the situation when it kept the video a secret for two weeks and allowed the creator of the video to withdraw from the school instead of expelling him.

Loia told parents that it is common practice to allow students to withdraw and he was doing what he was trained to do.

“Do our lives mean that little to you?” said Eboni Nelson, reading a statement from an eighth-grade student. “Cardinal Newman has failed as a whole.”

The school then decided to expel a second student who they found was involved in creating the video that made threats to “shoot up” the school.

The 16-year-old student was arrested on July 17 and later charged by the Richland County Sheriff’s Department with threatening the school, an offense worthy of 10 years maximum in jail.

About the Author

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Katie Malafronte is Campus Safety's Web Editor. She graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 2017 with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication Studies and a minor in Writing & Rhetoric. Katie has been CS's Web Editor since 2018.

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