Students to face punishments after homophobic harassment of classmates

St. Johns County Schools

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. – Students involved in an alarming incident at a St. Johns County High School, could face the toughest punishments the district has to offer. Video surfaced last week of students slinging homophobic slurs at classmates at Bartram Trail High School.

A group of male students began hoisting confederate flag symbols and shouting slurs at members of the school’s gay-straight-alliance club.

The student who shot the video says he’s no stranger to insults but says the problem appears to be getting worse.

The students seen shouting hate speech could face the most serious punishments the districts can offer.

Potential punishments include suspension and even expulsion. Level 3 and 4 punishments are the harshest punishments in the school’s district handbook. Both offenses can result in criminal proceedings.

A level 3 infraction is considered a serious breach of conduct. For Level 3 punishment can include but is not limited to:

  • A note home to a parent
  • In-school suspension
  • Temporary or permanent removal from extracurricular activity.

Level 4 is more serious.

All level 4 offenses must be reported to the office of school services. Consequences can include:

  • Out-of-school suspension of up to 10 days
  • Referral to law enforcement
  • Expulsion.

A district spokesperson says the student’s behavior is not acceptable, and that it’s very disappointing students handled themselves that way.

No word yet on how long an investigation will take.

About the Author:

This native of the Big Apple joined the News4Jax team in July 2021.