An elementary school in Barrie, Ont. was the latest victim of a string of anti-Semitic graffiti incidents in Canada over the past month.
Johnson Street Public School was vandalized last weekend after a student from the school had a letter published in the Barrie Examiner. In the letter, the student voiced her opinions about her shul, which had been vandalized earlier in November.
The words “brain-washing factory” were written on the school, paired with a swastika and a Star of David, said Len Rudner, the Canadian Jewish Congress’ Ontario regional director.
“I was informed of this by someone at the synagogue. Clearly people are being much more attentive,” he said. “[We’re] concerned about the way these things are spreading.”
Rudner is unsure if the graffiti is connected to the shul that was vandalized.
“It’s difficult to tell. People can be incredibly stupid,” he said.
The school called the police, who are currently investigating the incident, said Eileen Carl, Johnson Street’s principal, adding that the graffiti was cleaned off by the end of the day last Monday.
“I think [the students] were really quite hurt. We just finished doing a big unit on the Holocaust in the Grade 7 curriculum,” she said. “The kids are really disappointed and… disgusted.”
Other graffiti incidents have also occurred recently in Calgary, Oshawa, Ont., London, Ont., and the Moncton, N.B., area.