A group of parents has filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against a school in Long Island, NY, due to a teacher’s alleged racist photo caption.
A science teacher at Longwood High School allegedly created an insensitive slideshow featuring photos from a class trip to the Bronx Zoo, an attorney representing the parents said, CBS News reports.
The slideshow featured a photo of four Black students at the zoo, and one of a gorilla, with a caption that read, “Monkey see, monkey do,” CBS News reports.
“There can’t be any question about what they meant,” said lawyer John Ray, CBS News reports. “Remember, this is a zoology class. Evolution is taught.”
The four students say they were humiliated when they saw themselves in the photo, CBS News reports.
When one of the students, Khevin Beaubrun, a senior, posted a video about it on Snapchat, he was threatened and pressured by school administrators to delete the video or face suspension, CBS News reports.
“This is institutionalized racial superiority,” Ray said, CBS News report.
Longwood administrators reportedly defended the teacher as a good man who made an honest mistake and intended no malice, CBS News reports.
Administrators also said the field trip and slideshow has been going on for a decade and includes all races of students posing for “monkey see” photos, CBS News reports.
“We are going to be asking for at least $12 million,” Ray said, CBS News reports.
School officials and the teacher hope to meet with parents and students, CBS News reports.
BET reached out to attorney John Ray and the school district for comment.
(Photo: Getty Images)