My reason for writing is that my granddaughter is considered half white and half black and I understand this is unusual at Keene High school. She just arrived this school year.

My granddaughter has high functioning autism, which means she is quite smart and has a difficult time socially. So, you can imagine, a student who is biracial and has autism has arrived at Keene High School and is unable to speak up for herself. She has refused any special education services because she doesn’t want to stand out. (You have to smile at that.)

The current high school principal might require your assistance with goals of having a safe environment at the school for all students. Being half white and half black, she has not been received well, based on racial comments by some of the student body to her. My granddaughter speaks highly of the staff and the assistant principal.

It appears as though the students and some of the administration have not been trained on how to deal with these situations.

My purpose in writing is not to blame the past or even the present for the lack of understanding of biracial students by the student body, nor do I propose that it is the entire student body. My purpose in writing is to suggest that support for education and that change in these areas continue stronger at Keene High School.

When asked, the student body can be involved in the changing of attitudes at the school. Don’t just ask the students who have experienced bullying, racism and prejudice. Ask the students who bully and suffer from negative racism and prejudice themselves. Ask the students who are angry and show behavior difficulties.

Everyone needs to be listened to, even the principal. They all need your help and support. Strive to become a model school for everyone. In 2012, the current principal shared his hopes in The Sentinel for himself and Keene High School. He can’t do it alone.

My granddaughter has yet to recover from her negative racial experiences at Keene High School and has selected at-home, online schooling. So, as you can imagine, a student who needs social interaction the most will be isolated at home until someone, somehow can help her feel safe enough to return to Keene High School.

My message is peaceful and I’m hoping for a response that is peaceful. Thank you for reading.

THERESE GRATTAN

13 Harvey Lane

Westborough, Mass.