LATHAM, N.Y. (NEWS10) — One of North Colonie Central School District’s elementary schools, Forts Ferry, was vandalized over the weekend with racist graffiti. The incident comes just months after the elementary school hired a Black man as principal in July.

In an emotional letter to the community, Superintendent of Schools D. Joseph Corr said, “windows were broken, racial slurs were written, and deplorable images were drawn on the exterior of the building.” The district’s maintenance staff has since removed the graffiti and secured the windows, according to Superintendent Corr.

“As a community and as an educational institution, we must join together and denounce this hatred,” the letter continued. “We cannot and will not shy away from the fact that this act occurred at Forts Ferry where Dr. Parker, a Black man, became principal in July. We need to recognize the ugliness and pain of this moment and we must, in word and deed, stand up and say racism has no place in our schools.”

The Colonie Police Department is investigating the incident alongside school administrators. “We will work to support those who have been victimized by these actions, and we will work to discover who did this and hold those individuals accountable,” Corr vowed. “Such actions are classified as hate crimes by New York State statute.”