BROWNSBURG, Ind. (WISH) — The Brownsburg Community School Corporation vowed to take “swift and appropriate” disciplinary action against students who posed for a photo with a racial slur written in chalk.
The image shows three teens squatting behind the “n-word,” written on the ground in yellow letters spanning approximately six feet.
The two girls and boy are smiling, pouting and posing, apparently aware their photo is being snapped.
It was shared Tuesday on social media with the caption, “OH MY GOD I LOVE IT HERE SO MUCH,” followed by two emoji smileys.
A container that appears to hold chalk matching the color of the racial slur is partially obscured by the caption.
Screenshots of the post began circulating within hours on Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram.
Vicki Murphy, a spokesperson for the Brownsburg Community School Corporation, said two of the three teens in the photo had been identified as Brownsburg High School students.
She declined to confirm what type of disciplinary action they would face.
“This type of behavior is disappointing, insensitive, offensive, not acceptable and not representative of our community or our students,” Murphy said in an emailed statement to News 8.
The photo was not taken on school or town property, according to district officials and Brownsburg Park Board members.
Nevaeh Grant, a sophomore at Brownsburg High School, slammed her peers’ behavior in a public Facebook post shared more than 200 times.
“Do better,” she wrote in the post. “I hate that I have to go to school with people like this.”
Grant, who is African American, told News 8 she was deeply hurt by the photo and urged her classmates to explore the historical usage of the n-word.
“It symbolizes a lot of oppression,” she said. “This isn’t a joke and it’s not funny. It hurts so many people.”
Her father, local basketball coach Duane Grant, said he was proud of the 16-year-old for taking a stand against racism.
“I stand fully behind my daughter,” he told News 8. “She’s very outspoken and, to a degree, we encourage that.”
The teens in the photo and their families could not be reached for comment.
One of the girls apologized for the photo in a social media post, according to followers.
Nevaeh Grant acknowledged “everybody makes mistakes” but said she wasn’t ready to accept the apology.