Students at Michigan high school protest handling of alleged haz - WNEM TV 5

Students at Michigan high school protest handling of alleged hazing

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A high school football player in Michigan has been suspended and removed from the team for what the school calls a case of hazing, but many students say the incident should be treated as a sexual assault.

Current and former students at Fordson High School in Dearborn held a protest Monday night after an alleged hazing incident involving two football players last week. Their outrage is how school administrators identified the incident.

Some feel the incident was not a case of hazing.

"If the school called it what it was, if they went on their website and said this was sexual assault and didn't call it bullying or hazing, all this outrage and all this commotion wouldn't have been as intense as it is now,” one student said.

Superintendent Dr. Glenn Maylenko responded to criticism by saying the district is fully investigating the allegations.

“We’re taking this seriously and the rumors are not accurate, there was no rape,” he says. “The investigation is not complete.”

Some concerned parents also said this is a conversation the community needs to have.

"I am very proud of every student that came here,” one parent said.

Others are hopeful to change this negative situation by discussing the difference between hazing and sexual assault - and produce a positive result.

"Maybe after all of this people will actually start, like standing up to bullying and sexual harassment."

School officials are not saying exactly what happened, but insist rumors about a rape occurring are not accurate.

Dearborn Police are also investigating the incident.

Superintendent Dr. Glenn Maylenko released the following statement regarding the incident: 

As Superintendent of the Dearborn Public Schools I want to reassure this community that we are taking appropriate actions to address the situation that occurred earlier this week at Fordson high school. Social Media has created rumors and stories that are inaccurate. Confidentiality and student privacy law prohibits my ability to provide details.  However, I can confirm it was not an incident of rape.  These were students involved in behaviors that we will not tolerate in this district. All responsible are being dealt with appropriately and we have been in contact with the Dearborn Police to determine if any further legal action will be taken. In order to ensure the rights of all I would like to remind everyone that we are dealing with minors and we hope that people would be sensitive to this when making posts on social media.  Here is a copy of a letter that was sent from the School Principal regarding this situation.

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