Local schools questioned for 9/11 tributes
SUDBURY, Mass. (WHDH) -- Wednesday, millions across the country marked the 12th anniversary of the attacks of Sept. 11. However, two Massachusetts schools are feeling heat for how they marked, or didn't mark the anniversary.
As Americans paused to commemorate the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks officials at Concord-Carlisle High School were on the defensive after parents complained about their 9/11 activities. Included in those activities was the reading of a Poem by a Muslim poet entitled, “My Grandmother Washes Her Feet in the Sink of the Bathroom at Sears.” The Pledge of Allegiance was not said.
"My kids were talking about it because I have a freshman and a senior. They felt it was in poor taste,” one parent said.
Principal Peter Badalament released a statement apologizing for not knowing the student who regularly reads the pledge was absent, but also said, "We had the well-being of students at the forefront of our thinking when we chose to acknowledge 9/11 by reading a poem that focused on cross-cultural understanding."
"If it’s about tolerance and forgiveness and so forth I think that would be perfectly legitimate,” said Jack Henderson, a parent.
At Lincoln-Sudbury High there was no acknowledgement of 9/11 yesterday, which surprised some parents.
“It’s the right thing to do. It was a big day in our country,” Concord-Carlisle parent Susan Brown said.
But when students complained, Principal Bella Wong held a moment of silence Thursday. She also released a statement that said, "I was quite taken by your expressions of caring for the personal loss of others. While I cannot turn back time I do offer you this opportunity, now a day later, let's take a minute all together.”
“I think she responded to the student’s concerns, sure that was appropriate. It could have been an honest mistake, an accident,” said Laurie Finnegan, a Lincoln-Sudbury parent.
Wong said this was her first year at the school, and she didn’t realize a moment was expected. She said she will make sure there is an acknowledgment next year.