The Jewish Federation of Madison released a response to an anti-Semitic photo that surfaced out of Baraboo.
The photo, which the school district says was taken last spring, depicts a group of Baraboo High School students posing in an anti-Semitic gesture.
The district says it was taken off school property and was not during a school-sponsored event.
The federation released the following statement:
"We are alarmed by the disturbing display of anti-Semitism by a group of Baraboo High School students. Though the incident apparently took place last May, it reflects a rising swell of anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry. We are particularly concerned with the prevalence of bigotry within schools; more than 25 percent of all the recorded anti-Semitic incidents in Wisconsin last year took place among students or on campus. We have witnessed numerous egregious incidents targeting African Americans, Latinos, and other minority groups.
We appreciate the school district’s comment and look forward to working with them to prevent any future such incidents. As we know, acts of hate begin with hateful expressions. Such expressions must be a call to action for schools and families to educate youth to respect diversity and to embrace difference. The values that will hold us together must be taught and reinforced, lest we see the continued rise of hate and its consequences."
The school district says they are investigating the photo and will take the necessary action, including legal.
Gov.-elect Tony Evers decried the photo, saying it has "no place in Wisconsin."