Big Lake Schools investigating racist ‘promposal’
School officials in Big Lake are investigating a racist "promposal" post that has been circulating on social media.
The picture, "reportedly involving students," showed them holding a sign that read, "If I was Black I’d be picking cotton, but I’m white so I’m picking you Prom?"
The Big Lake School District said in a statement posted online Wednesday that it is aware of the post and is looking into it.
"We will be evaluating it under any and all applicable School District policies and will take whatever action is necessary and appropriate to address the situation," the statement says, in part.
The district added that it’s unable to provide more specifics due to state and federal privacy laws.
However, the district added, "Big Lake Schools does not condone racism, in any form. Our school has been committed to implementing the Hornet Way, as a way to develop and guide our students’ character and actions. The Hornet Way teaches the values of respect, honesty, kindness, responsibility, and fairness. We believe those values extend to all aspects of our school community. The School District also is committed to ensuring that all students and staff are treated equally and can attend school and report to work in a comfortable and welcoming environment. Our expectations are high and we expect compliance by all."
Later Wednesday afternoon, the district posted another statement.
As related in our previous statement, the Big Lake School District was made aware late yesterday afternoon of a "promposal" post on social media. The incident involved high school students using a derogatory racial comment in conjunction with an invitation to a non-School District-sponsored prom event. Over the last 24 hours, our administration has responded to this report by investigating the incident
and addressing student, parent, staff, and community concerns. We want to assure our school community that the School District has addressed the actions of the individuals involved in this incident in accordance with School District policies, as the School District would do with any similar incidents. State and federal data privacy laws prohibit the disclosure of information about the resolution of any reports with respect to any individual student. What we can tell you is that Big Lake Schools recognizes that events of this nature can be traumatic to our students, staff, and community. We, as a school, need to immediately and comprehensively respond to those concerns with understanding and support. This morning, additional social workers and counselors have been dispatched to our schools to
help those students and staff who may wish assistance in processing and expressing their justified emotions and anger relative to this incident. We also want to emphasize that the Big Lake School District does not condone or accept racism, intolerance, or discrimination in any form. School District Administration will seek to work with Civil Rights leaders and other professionals to hold discussions on race and related issues, and how we can better ensure acceptance, inclusion, and respect for all members of our community. We will continue to swiftly react to any additional concerns that evolve from this matter, if they should occur. We also wish to reiterate that our school has been dedicated to implementing the Hornet Way, as a method to develop and guide our students’ character and actions. The Hornet
Way teaches the values of respect, honesty, kindness, responsibility, and fairness. We believe those values extend to all aspects of our school community. The School District is committed to ensuring that all students and staff are treated equally and can attend school and report to work in a safe, comfortable, and welcoming environment. Our expectations are high, and we expect compliance by all students and staff as well as members of the community who interact with our students and staff at school. We encourage any students or staff members who are experiencing discomfort or who are subjected to inappropriate conduct to notify an administrator or staff member to seek assistance in resolving those concerns. Our school is a community. We are not all the same, but we are united in our
pledge to the Hornet Way, diversity, and respect for all.