Indian students in Minnesota pulled out of class for wearing red
More than two dozen Indian students were pulled out of class for wearing red to a public school on the Leech Lake Ojibwe Reservation in Minnesota.

Principal John Klinke said the Cass Lake-Bena High School was concerned about the students' safety on October 13. Someone had painted a threat on a sign at the school about the color red.

But parents say their children were unfairly singled out. One tribal police officer believes the students were the victims of discrimination.

“The bottom line is there is a lot of racism and teachers don’t understand the kids,” Mike Robinson told The Bemidji Pioneer. “The police officers have to understand where Indian kids are coming from. These kids want an education, not to be profiled, picked on and held in a room because of certain clothes they wear… That’s profiling.”

A senior at the school said Indian students have been harassed for their clothing. He asked his friends to wear red on the same day in order to call attention to the issue but he was surprised by the way administrators responded.

"I didn’t think they were going to hand pick all these students. I wanted to get students, parents and the community involved, but that wasn’t happening," the student told the paper. "No one was going home and telling their parents they were being harassed.”

Klinke acknowledged that the school has received complaints from Indian students who have been harassed.

Get the Story:
‘How did this happen?’: Cass Lake School district faces tough issues of school safety, racism (The Bemidji Pioneer 10/26)