By: Kristyn Blackwood
This past Thursday and Friday, allegations of underclassmen being hazed by 13 Senior Varsity Football players at Clover High School were made. The Clover School District is currently investigating three separate incidents over the course of two weeks. The three Freshmen victims and all the accused hazers were all a part of the Clover Varsity football team. There are many rumors going around about these incidents, but Clover school officials say that it still is not clear exactly what happened.
The Public Information Officer for Clover Schools, Mychal Frost, says, “This is simply something that is not tolerated in our school or any school for that matter.” Frost stated that the hazing occurrences happened in the boys’ locker room at school, even though an adult is supposed to be present at all times. McCray, the mother of a 17-year-old Clover High School football player victimized in these assaults, along with other parents of other students hazed, say they are all upset that their children were victims of such a happening at school while under the care of school and athletic employees. After hearing that hazing has happened before, McCray also expressed how concerned she is about the safety at CHS and whether there is proper supervision
According to formal laws, “hazing” means the wrongful striking, laying open hand upon, threatening with violence, or offering to do bodily harm by a superior student to a subordinate student with intent to punish or injure the subordinate student. As well as unauthorized treatment by the superior student of a subordinate student of a tyrannical, abusive, insulting, or humiliating nature. South Carolina Hazing laws state that hazing at all state supported universities, colleges, and public institutions of higher learning is prohibited. When an investigation has disclosed substantial evidence that a student has committed an act or acts of hazing, the student may be dismissed, expelled, suspended, or punished as the principal considers appropriate. Obviously, this kind of behavior is not tolerated or appropriate at any public place and should be taken care of and dealt with accordingly.
Saturday, police reports were made available to the public that officers just responded Thursday to the allegations of the assaults against McCray’s son that occurred in September. Other reports show that other students were assaulted the same way on the football team, who were ages 14 and 15. “A line was crossed here; this was not any hazing or initiation. My son was threatened.” McCray said.
According to the Clover schools’ mission statement, the schools must provide a safe environment for students, as well as the schools’ policy says that any case of bullying must be reported by any school personnel. This occurrence of hazing is a form of bullying that should have been reported right after it happened, not nearly a month later. The York County Sheriff’s Department is still working on this case and more information should be released as the case is investigated further.