The principal of Andrean (Ind.) has addressed the actions of the school’s students during Friday night’s rivalry game against Bishop Noll.
According to a USA Today report, the Andrean crowd held Donald Trump Fatheads and displayed an ESPN Deportes banner in an attempt to taunt the largely Latino student body of Bishop Noll.
There were also some iffy chants.
The taunt from the Andrea section included “Speak English” and “Build a wall.” According to reports, those chants were answered with “we’re bilingual” and “you’re a racist. The report also indicated that Andrean students responded by pointing to the African-American students in their own section and the Noll students yelled back, “you’re a token.”
Despite the claim from Andrean parents and students that the chants weren’t meant to be offensive and the “USA” theme had been used at previous games, principal Rick Piwowarski denounced the behavior in a letter to parents.
“Andrean community, As many of you are aware, during the Andrean/Bishop Noll Catholic Cup basketball game on Friday there was behavior reported in the news that is not consistent with the expectations we hold for our students. The rivalry between the two schools stems from years of history and healthy competition. Unfortunately, some students in our “Super Fan” section engaged in behavior that was emotionally charged and inappropriate. As soon as administrators were made aware of such activities, actions were taken to stop such taunts and confiscate items from the student section. At Andrean, we take very seriously the allegations that members of the public have placed on our shoulders. Those allegations are inconsistent with our school’s mission as well as the proven reputation of compassion and service that Andrean has offered Northwest Indiana for over fifty years.
Whatever the intention of these kids was, this isn’t the type of behavior administrators are going to fall over themselves to embrace. That said, 14-to-18-year-olds have been known to make judgement errors without considering the consequences of their actions.
Considering the lengths some state high school athletic associations have gone to ensure “safe spaces” at sporting events, this seems like a situation that warranted investigation.