Students and teachers were left in shock after a college recruiter visited the school and told them to line up by skin color, from darkest to lightest.
Students at the Oklahoma high school was then told by the Oklahoma Christian University staff member to then line up in order of whether their hair was “nappy” or straight.
Teachers were quick to alert the school’s administration and stop the recruiter.
“What led from the session was an exercise involving inappropriate and hurtful statements, which will never be tolerated in our school community,” the principal of Harding Charter Preparatory School said in a statement on Facebook.
Students said the exercise, carried out by the white recruiter, was very distressing.
“He was like, ‘Let’s play a little game,'” one student from the 11th grade class told CNN affiliate KFOR. “He said, ‘OK, everyone now line up from darkest to lightest skin complexion.'”
“He told us to line up, nappiest hair in the back and straighter hair in the front,” another student told KFOR.
“That’s when I felt uncomfortable. I was like, ‘OK, I don’t think this is right,'” the first student said.
The other student told KFOR some teachers left the assembly in tears.”They were crying and they were offended. Their faces just looked disgusted. I know they had a talk with him after, like, ‘That’s not OK,'” the student said.
Oklahoma Christian University President John deSteiguer visited the school to apologize.
“He led a racist activity that was offensive, harmful and inappropriate. I’m embarrassed and I’m ashamed and I’m mad at what happened and I’m very, very sorry,” he said.
‘Supportive learning environment’
“Within an hour after the school visit, the admissions counselor was no longer employed at the university.” A spokeswoman for the university said.
High school principal Steven Stefanick said staff members immediately reported what was happening to school administrators, who contacted the university.
“As a school community, we are proud of our students and staff members for taking a stand on this issue and showcasing our community values of diversity, inclusion, and a safe and supportive learning environment,” he said in a statement.
This is not acceptable and I’m glad action was taken quickly, but I wonder how many other kids were put through this before he was stopped.
Please share to support those teachers who complained and those students who questioned it. We all need to take a stand against racism.