BFA Teachers Stand Strong Against Racism and Hate


BFA teachers participate in Friday’s event. Photo credit: Lyla Rouleau

Claire Johnson, Writer

In the early morning of Oct. 8, Bellows Free Academy teachers and students banded together in a display against hate. Holding signs made the night before by students in BFA’s Social Justice Club, students and faculty stood with signs facing South Main St.  Standing at the front of the line was BFA math teacher and Social Justice Club advisor Nicole Schubert who, along with other teachers, organized the event.

According to Schubert, “over 50 teachers participated [in the event].”

Schubert said the idea for the signs and display started after a faculty meeting during which teachers were briefed on the recent incident involving a racist meme being airdropped to a student of color at BFA.

The incident mentioned occurred on Sept. 17 when a student sitting in the cafeteria was airdropped a picture of three people dressed in Ku Klux Klan white hoods.  The picture bore the caption “three K’s a day keeps the n—ers away”. 

The student had this to say about the gathering on Oct. 8: “It made me feel really hopeful. It felt really good that there were people backing me up.  [It gave me] kind of happy tears.”

Not every student was in support of the display, however.  Schubert said that two students or more drove by during the gathering and, seeing the signs, which said things like “stop hate” and “Black Lives Matter,” revved their engines to blow smoke and make noise against the anti-racist display.

BFA math teacher Helen (Nellie) Dawson had this to say about the incident: “It is easy to spread hate behind a computer screen, phone screen, or airdrop, but it doesn’t make it less hateful.”