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Rye School Board President Slams Hazing Incident

RYE, N.Y. – Rye Board of Education President Laura Slack called the recent hazing incident involving a group of Rye High School students "a deplorable act" that "has no place in a school setting or in our community" at Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting.

Slack’s comments come on the same day that three Rye High School juniors – Max Meyerson, Tristan Scragg, and Scott Pinson – pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor hazing and unlawful imprisonment charges in Rye City Court. The three also face felony assault charges in connection with the incident.

Slack, speaking on behalf of the board, refrained from discussing specifics but said that it is important to clearly communicate the board’s position to the public.

“The deplorable act allegedly perpetrated by a handful of students has not been, is not and never will be behavior endorsed by the board or the district,” Slack said. “It is important to note that this is a police matter that occurred off campus. There should be no question that the district is fully in control of the safety of its students on campus and at school activities.”

Despite student statements to the contrary, Slack echoed Superintendent Ed Shine’s view that hazing is not a tradition in Rye.

“While some have referred to this activity as a tradition, Dr. Shine is absolutely right when he states that just because a handful of students call it a ‘tradition,’ we should not, and will not, dignify the alleged conduct in this manner.”

Slack said that the district will continue to take a hard-line approach in its discipline of any students who take part in hazing or bullying.

“The community should know that, where appropriate, reported incidents of bullying and hazing have been and will continue to be referred to the Rye Police Department immediately,” Slack said. “Those involved will be disciplined to the fullest extent permissible under the district’s code of conduct and we expect, will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Slack concluded her comments by reiterating the district’s vehement disapproval of any hazing or bullying activity.

“Hazing, bullying, or any other similar conduct has no place in the school setting or in our community,” Slack said. “Such conduct will be addressed swiftly and those responsible will be dealt with to the fullest extent possible under applicable law and Board policy.”

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