Tenafly School District vows investigation into student's Hitler project

There is an uproar in a Bergen County town over a fifth grader’s project that spoke positively about the "accomplishments" of Adolf Hitler.

News 12 Staff

Jun 1, 2021, 9:09 PM

Updated 1,051 days ago

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There is an uproar in a Bergen County town over a fifth grader’s project that spoke positively about the "accomplishments" of Adolf Hitler.
The Tenafly School District is now promising a full investigation after learning the student's teacher approved the topic.
The student allegedly dressed as Hitler for the project and listed antisemitism and the murder of 6 million Jewish people in the Holocaust as accomplishments.
“Adolf Hitler is a red line for Jews. Period,” says Jewish Federation of Northern New Jersey CEO Jason Shames.
Shames says that the Jewish Federation supports the investigation into the teacher who approved the assignment, which was also apparently posted in the school hallway for weeks.
“I’m trying to give a 10-year-old the benefit of the doubt. Let’s see what happens,” Shames says.
The federation had been inundated with calls since the story broke late last week, but deplored the vitriol being spread on social media against the child and his parents.
“I think rushing to judgment here is actually harming the situation. Not being helpful. It's riling up the masses,” says Shames. “Social media is not playing a positive role in this once again. I think we need to be pretty careful about the fact that we're talking about a 10-year-old child.”
Nearly all the parents arriving at dismissal this afternoon did not want to talk to News 12 New Jersey about the situation. But one mother who wished to remain anonymous said the uproar was getting out of hand.
“I am not saying what the child did was right by no means. I'm against any kind of racism, bullying and everything. But this child is right now suffering because of the parents' reaction online,” the parent said.
The Tenafly School District released a statement on Monday, saying in part, "We understand that tensions are running high and that our community is extremely upset. We share those feelings."
School officials say that the investigation is continuing and that parents should expect an update this week.


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