Sayville Boys Varsity Soccer Season Cancelled Due To Hazing Incident

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Sayville Public Schools announced Thursday that its boys varsity soccer season has been cancelled due to hazing incidents.

According to a letter sent out to parents by Superintendent Marc Ferris, the alleged incidents have been going on for some time, taking place off campus. The hazing apparently involved violence and humiliation towards younger players of the soccer team, as well as racist and antisemitic behavior, but specific details were not released.

“This hazing behavior was systematic and ongoing throughout the season,” Ferris wrote in the letter. “In addition to the fact that certain students participated in these activities as the aggressors, it is equally concerning that members of the team felt unable to speak out against this or report this to any adults of authority over the course of the season. Further, there is evidence that this behavior extended beyond this season and included additional behaviors in past years that included forms of racism and antisemitism towards certain team members.  This is not a team culture that we can condone or accept as a school district.”

Ferris claimed in a follow-up email that no there was no racist or antisemitic behavior in these particular incidents that got the season cancelled, but have been found in past seasons. He also added that there there were no allegations of sexual misconduct in these reports.

The district added that it took no pleasure in making this decision, but believed doing so would send the right message about such incidents.

“It is our expectation that these activities build students up, inspire them with confidence, and support them in becoming strong, collaborative, healthy members of society, instilled with the courage to stand up for what is right and to advocate against what is wrong,” Ferris said about extracurricular activities. “No program, regardless of win loss record, status, or standing in the community will exist in our schools if it does not live up to these expectations.”

The names of the students involved have not been released, and the district did not immediately return a request for comment.