Comal ISD investigating ‘highly inappropriate and demeaning racial comments’ made during volleyball game

Canyon High School students allegedly made racist comments toward Hays High School volleyball team

Comal ISD is investigating reports of "highly inappropriate and demeaning comments" made on school property. KSAT's Camelia Juarez explains how the district is responding.

NEW BRAUNFELS, Texas – The Comal Independent School District is investigating after Canyon High School students allegedly made “highly inappropriate and demeaning racial comments” during a volleyball game Friday night.

A parent of a Hays High School student, Jennifer Price, shared a post to Facebook Friday night describing the incident and stating that Canyon High School students yelled the N-word at her daughters during their volleyball game.

“Tonight our Hays volleyball girls played Canyon HS where the front row of Canyon’s student section yelled the N-word (hard R) at my daughters and a few more teammates throughout the match, SO MANY TIMES!!! When my daughter missed her serve, they shouted ‘Make a play Nword-hard R!’ Our coaches told their Admin and all they told the boys was ‘watch your mouths,’” Price said in the post.

Price said nobody was removed from the game and that the students “were allowed to continue to heckle the girls on their way out.”

CISD acting superintendent Mandy Epley addressed the incident in a statement shared to the district’s Facebook page.

“I want to take this opportunity to address a situation that is currently being circulated on social media. Allegedly, at last night’s volleyball game at Canyon High School, members of the Canyon student section made highly inappropriate and demeaning racial comments towards members of the Hays High School volleyball team,” Epley said. “Should it be found that any one student, or group of students, made any sort of racial comments at any point during or after the game, they will be disciplined to the fullest extent possible.”

Epley said CISD and Canyon High School officials are actively investigating the allegations.

“Comal ISD and Canyon High School will not tolerate this sort of behavior as it does not represent who we are as a District or as a campus,” Epley said. “I want to personally apologize to the players and coaches on the Hays High School volleyball team, as well as the Hays High School community for any inappropriate comments that may have been made.”

In her Facebook post, Price called the incident “ironic” because the girls were all wearing the No. 3 on their hands for Friday night’s game “in support of Duke Volleyball’s Rachel Richardson, who just experienced this at her match 6 days ago against BYU.”

Richardson, who is African American, and other members of the Duke University Women’s volleyball team were recently heckled at a volleyball match against Brigham Young University.

Richardson posted a statement to Twitter on Aug. 28 addressing the incident, which is nearly identical to the incident Price described at Canyon High School.

“Please be assured that we will get to the bottom of this issue and that Comal ISD will not tolerate any racially intolerant behavior,” Epley said.

About the Author:

Mary Claire Patton has been a journalist with KSAT 12 since 2015. She has reported on several high-profile stories during her career at KSAT and specializes in trending news and things to do around Texas and San Antonio.