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Mars School District says claims of racism at football game unsubstantiated

September 19, 2018 News Extra

Mars High School students, decked out in red, white and blue, cheer at the start of Friday's football game against visiting Penn Hills. Social media posts on both Facebook and Twitter, as well as calls to talk radio stations Monday, questioned the theme.

ADAMS TWP — Mars School District officials on Wednesday said they were “disappointed and troubled” by “inaccurate information and unsubstantiated claims” about how students behaved during Friday’s football game against Penn Hills.

On Monday, a Pittsburgh radio show alleged members of the student section yelled racist taunts were yelled from the section, and a Facebook post by the host alleged, “fans were yelling the N word.” The post was accompanied by a photo of the student section, where students were dressed in red, white and blue as part of the night’s American theme.

In a letter Wednesday, signed by Superintendent Wes Shipley and School Board President Dayle Ferguson, officials expressed their disappointment with the accusations and said they are “troubled” by the false allegations.

They add that the America theme was approved by school administrators and the game fell just a few days following the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks at the World Trade Center in New York City.

Ferguson said a thorough investigation found the claims to be false, and “hundreds” of witnesses including fans, staff and security guards said they heard no such words or taunts being used.

A full story will appear in the Butler Eagle.