The Upper Darby School district in Philadelphia has issued an apology after students dressed up as Ku Klux Klan members for a school assignment, NBC 10 reports.
The photos of Upper Darby High School students were dated a year old, but gained attention on social media on Thursday evening. The costumes worn by three young women were part of a class assignment highlighting historical moments from the 1920s. An investigation determined that district leaders didn’t mean for the project to cause any ill intent.
Former students were surprised to see the costumes since the school is considered a prime example of diversity.
Superintendent Richard Dunlap released a statement apologizing to students and residents of the area.
“There were skits associated with this project, and a photo of a skit intended to identify and highlight the atrocities of the Ku Klux Klan circulated on social media [Thursday] evening,” Dunlap wrote.
He added: “The photo has offended many in the community, and the Upper Darby School District is deeply sorry for this. Though there was no intention to harm or offend anyone, we recognize that the project was in poor judgment and an inappropriate activity.”
In addition to diversity training, the school plans to speak with students about the unwanted viral attention this week.