A group of Afghan refugee students at a Maryland high school has allegedly suffered from racist bullying and physical assault, with at least two seeking medical attention for injuries they reportedly sustained following an attack.
The Maryland office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) detailed the allegations it had received in a letter to Parkdale High School Principal Dr. Tasha Graves on Tuesday.
According to the complaint, a group of Latino students approached the Afghan students in a threatening manner and told them to “go back where they came from” on May 8.
CAIR said it was told that the teacher who was at the scene had fled. The school counselor and/or the school officer then allegedly advised the Afghan students to “not return to school until the matter was handled.”
However, all but one of the Afghan students returned to school the next day. This time, some of them were allegedly physically assaulted and choked, and at least two of them had to seek medical attention for their injuries.
The Afghan students did not return to school the following day, May 10. But their absence did not deter their attackers, who allegedly stormed into their neighborhood and assaulted them once again.
The students have reportedly not returned to school since. CAIR said it has urged them to file a police report, but it is unknown whether one has been made.
CAIR has called on Graves and the Prince George’s County Public School System to investigate the allegations, as well as the school’s safety climate for other refugee students.
The advocacy group also demands to be made aware of steps that the school will take against the offending students, as well as measures to ensure a safe environment for all refugee students.
This is not the first time Afghan students were reported to have faced discrimination in U.S. schools. Last year, CAIR filed a civil rights complaint against Baltimore’s Academy for College and Career Exploration for the alleged assault and bullying of Afghan students by other students and its own staff.
NextShark has reached out to Graves’ office for comment.