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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, May 10, 2024 / — The Israeli American Council’s (IAC’s) School Watch program, which seeks to ensure a safe K-12 school environment free of antisemitic and anti-Israel hate, has received a 690 percent rise in complaints of student bullying, harassment and teacher bias nationwide in the first three months since the Oct. 7 Hamas massacre in Israel.

IAC School Watch officials say they have recorded at least 324 antisemitic and anti-Israel incidents by students against other students or from teachers since Oct. 7, an average of 27 cases per week from 25 states where IAC maintains chapters from last October to January of this 2023-2024 school year. During the same period of October to January in the 2022-2023 school year, IAC School Watch logged 41 incidents. In the entire 2022-23 school year, IAC School Watch received 116 complaints of such incidents, averaging three reports per week.

IAC School Watch maintains a web platform through which parents can alert the program to complaints of antisemitic and anti-Israel hate. IAC School Watch officials follow up and investigate each case, most often seeking to resolve the issue by involving school authorities. In many cases, IAC School Watch has worked with school districts to provide teacher-training and student programs to educate about antisemitism and anti-Israel national origin biases.

“The current wave of antisemitism we are witnessing across schools in the U.S is appalling. This should come as no surprise, following years of neglecting to address the issue of Jew-hatred properly,” said IAC Vice President of Civic Engagement and Fighting Antisemitism Karen Bar-Or. “We urge school administrators to put a focus on this and invest in trainings for educators to understand antisemitism and know how to recognize and handle cases when they arise in the classroom. To our parents and students we ask that you continue to report occurrences to – no incident is too small. With proper education, we can make a significant change.”

Since Oct. 7, more than 65 percent of the incidents reported (211 cases) involved bullying and vandalism by students. The remaining 35 percent of the incidents (113 cases) involved anti-Israel classroom materials, statements or discrimination by school administrators or teachers. The majority of these incidents took place in high schools, while a smaller number took place in middle schools and a handful happened in elementary schools.

The reported incidents range from outright bullying and harassment to more subtle forms of antisemitic and anti-Israel biases. Among the more obvious cases, a Las Vegas area school student allegedly gave a Jewish teacher a Hitler salute. At a Fairlawn, NJ, middle school, students reportedly taunted Jewish and Israeli-American students with phrases such as “Israel made up the October 7 attack.” One student told an Israeli-American student that she supported the massacre and beheading of Israeli children and would support the killing of this specific teen. Another student allegedly told an Israeli-American peer, ”Hitler should have killed all of the Jews.”

“These cases are deeply disturbing and totally unacceptable, and they reflect the increasing discrimination and violence that the Jewish and Israeli-American community is experiencing across the country since October 7,” said Elan Carr, IAC CEO and former U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism. “Our mission through IAC School Watch is to ensure that Jewish and Israeli-American students in grades K-12 never have to face bias and hatred because of their identity, and we are ever-more determined to make sure our schools are safe places for all students.”

Dvir Assouline
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Originally published at

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