A group of at least 10 students at a high school in California is being disciplined after pictures of them spelling out slurs with their shirts went viral.
Last week at Escondido High School, located near San Diego, a group of students took the school tradition of spelling out words on T-shirts in senior photos and made it ugly. Every year the school administration encourages students to spell out pre-approved words or phrases for the senior class pictures.
However, this year at the senior picnic, after the photos were taken, some students who spelled separate words for the official photo came together to take pictures using their shirts to spell out racial and homophobic slurs. The students posted pictures on Instagram and Snapchat, where it was seen and then shared by students who were not entertained by the group’s “joke.”
Cade Parnell, an Escondido High School alum, saw a video of the students on Snapchat, took a screenshot, and posted it to Instagram, saying, “This gets me so fucking heated this shit is not funny and should not be taken as a joke.” The image quickly spread to the wider world, including to school administration. Officials say the students’ actions will have consequences but are keeping the details of those consequences private.
“Actions have been taken and students are receiving consequences; however, specifics must remain confidential,” the school’s principal, Adriana Lepe-Ramirez, said in a statement on Sunday. “We believe the lessons to be learned need to, and can, far exceed a period of punishment.”
Students at Escondido High School told BuzzFeed News the punishments for the students included suspensions, being kicked out of school clubs and sports teams, and not being allowed to walk at graduation. However, Principal Lepe-Ramirez wants to make this a learning opportunity for the entire student body. “Together, we have begun the process of educating all on the implications and power of one’s actions and decisions,” she said in her statement. “This will be a continuing process and I will provide updates throughout the year.”
H/T BuzzFeed News