In an incident at Hillcrest High School in Queens, New York, last Monday, a Jewish teacher found herself in a situation so terrifying that she had to lock herself in her office after a group of pro-Palestinian students, described as “radicalized,” learned of her attendance at a pro-Israel rally.

The teacher, whose identity remains undisclosed for her safety, was targeted after students had discovered a photo on her social media where she held a sign that read “I stand with Israel.”

According to a senior student at the school, a group of students decided to create a chat group to expose her and plan a riot.

The situation quickly escalated as hundreds of students flooded the hallways, creating chaos by chanting, jumping, shouting, and waving Palestinian flags or banners. Many students reportedly attempted to barge into the teacher’s classroom as staffers tried to block their entry.

Per the New York Post, the students chanted slogans and demanded the teacher’s dismissal due to her support for Israel, saying, “Free Palestine.”

Some clips posted on X showed damage to the school premises, including a water fountain ripped out of a hallway and damage to the floor of a boys’ bathroom.

The situation was so dire that it took numerous officers from the New York Police Department, including the counterterrorism bureau, to restore order at the school and safely escort the teacher out of the building.

City Councilman James Gennaro highlighted how severe the incident must have been, stating, “Whether it was one student or multiple students who did or said something, whatever the trigger was, something happened. And I know from my many years on the City Council that the counterterrorism task force is not engaged unless they believe it is potentially a serious situation.”

In a statement to the New York Post, the teacher expressed her deep concern over the calls for violence against her: “I have been a teacher for 23 years in the New York City public school system — for the last seven at Hillcrest High School. I have worked hard to be supportive of our entire student body and an advocate for our community, and was shaken to my core by the calls to violence against me that occurred online and outside my classroom last week.”

“No one should ever feel unsafe at school — students and teachers alike,” she added, as she also expressed hope for constructive dialogue on challenging topics.