The Pine Bush School District located in upstate New York has agreed to settle a three year old civil suit brought by five current and former Jewish students who claimed that they were the victims of anti-semitic abuse. The school district has settled the case for $4.48 million.
The plaintiffs had charged that Pine Bush, located about a 90 minute drive North of New York City and which serves Orange, Sullivan and Ulster counties, had failed to do anything in response to their continued complaints about the abuse.
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The agreement will be presented for approval on July 9th to White Plains Federal Judge Kenneth Karas.
Pine Bush posted a joint statement on its website together with the plaintiffs as part of the settlement agreement which read, in part, “Anti-Semitic harassment is wrong. The district will never condone anti-Semitic slurs or graffiti, Holocaust ‘jokes’ or physical violence. No family should have to experience the hurt and pain that bullying and name-calling can cause children to endure because of their religious, national or cultural identity.”
The school district went on to say that it has taken a number of steps in recent years to deal with the problem of ant-semitic harassment in its schools. These include improvements in how it monitors the problems and responds to complaints. It is working with the Anti-Defamation League to fight prejudice and has expanded its schools’ curricula to include more education on the problem.