Attacks on two Jewish schools in Stamford Hill have left ‘community in dismay’, says local rabbi

Two schools were attacked with red paint. Photograph: courtesy @jccnorthlondon

Attacks on two Jewish schools in Stamford Hill have “left the entire community in dismay”, a local rabbi has said.

Red paint was thrown on Beis Chinuch Lebonos Girls’ School and on another school on Lordship Road earlier this week.

Police are treating the incidents as hate crimes and investigating whether they are linked.

It follows the recent outbreak of violence between Hamas and Israel, which has led to thousands of civilian deaths.

Rabbi Levi Schapiro, director of the Jewish Community Council, told the Citizen that the community is going through “very difficult times”.

He said: “We are continuing our engagement efforts with senior police officials, local authorities and public safety managers to ensure there are adequate reassurance patrols on the streets.

“We acknowledge and hugely appreciate the Metropolitan Police adding additional officers during key times in the community.”

He said these times include drop-off and pick-up hours for local schools.

Police chiefs and politicians visit Beis Chinuch Lebonos Girls’ School. Photograph: Met Police

Rabbi Schapiro continued: “As a community, we have a responsibility to ensure the safety and security of all children. No child should need to live in fear in Hackney.

“Recent antisemitic events have been extremely concerning and we hope this should never repeat.”

No arrests have been made as yet in relation to the incidents at the schools, but Hackney’s borough commander James Conway has said they are being “robustly investigated”.

During a visit to Beis Chinuch Lebonos Girls’ School on Tuesday, alongside local politicians and Jewish leaders, Conway said: “Let us never tire of insisting that there is no place for hate in our communities.

“We know that hate crimes remain underreported and I strongly encourage anyone affected by such crimes to contact the police.”

Addressing the local community, he added: “I have specialist officers available to support you and together we can eradicate hate from our communities.”

Hackney’s acting deputy mayor Anntoinette Bramble was also in attendance, along with Haringey Council’s leader Peray Ahmet.

The Met has reported a rise in both antisemitic and Islamophobic hate crimes since the outbreak of violence in the Middle East.

Anyone with information about the school incidents is urged to call 101 quoting reference CAD5621/15OCT23 (Lordship Road) or CAD 4143/16OCT23 (Woodberry Down).