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Laurens County neighbors want action from school after students take offensive photo at football game

Five West Laurens County High School students were pictured with racial slur on shirt at a Friday night football game.

LAURENS COUNTY, Ga. — A Friday night football match brought frustrations from parents and the Laurens County community after a picture was shared on social media where five white male students spelled out the n-word. Bleckley High School graduate Quadravious Johnson has been to many football games and has "never seen anything like this."

The photo was shared on social media and quickly gained noticed by the Laurens County School. They released a statement on Saturday saying in part, "We do not support, nor condone, any offensive actions of this nature." Johnson says the situation is frustrating.

"To see a picture like that 2022 is just something that you never want to see because I feel like our ancestors fought so hard for us to get here today, and I feel like it's just super-disrespectful to see a picture like that," the 2020 graduate said.

Another photo shared on social media shows a group of "rowdy Raiders" spelling out the statement, #diggingforroyalgold. The football team was facing off against the Bleckley County High School team. Johnson wants to know why the five boys did it.

In the Laurens County School District 2020-2021 code of conduct, there isn't any guidance for racial slurs. There is mention of racial harassment used in verbal or discriminatory form. It says these actions are "strictly forbidden." Also in the handbook, students can be disciplined for use of profanity on school grounds at the discretion of the administration. Terrence James' son goes to West Laurens High School. His son knows the boys in the photo and says they made racial remarks to him at the game.

"He said, 'Daddy, they asked me to hold a shovel and one of them called me the n-word.' I was like, 'What?'"

James came to the school on Monday to speak with the superintendent. He says since the boys are minors, they superintendent couldn't discuss the matter. James wants the boys expelled.

"They're called the 'Rowdy Raiders.' You know, it's OK, but to do that, that was just a little bit overboard. They just can't put up with that in this day and time and age," James said.

Johnson says expulsion is the bare minimum and says the parents share some responsibility for the boys' behavior.

"Parents do have a lot to do with it, you know? What goes on because of what they see also inside the home."

Johnson hopes the schools do what's best.

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