February 3, 2019
Two girls who allowed two boys to put dark makeup on their faces and then posted a photo of the results online are being punished by their high school in north central Connecticut.
“The two underclassman girls pictured had been at home playing ‘make-up’ with two boys, and the boys applied multiple colors to the girls’ faces until they were completely covered. The girls thought this was funny, and shared their experience with friends online,” said Andrew O’Brien, principal of Simsbsury High School, in a written statement to parents.
The girls posted the photo on Snapchat.
“Shortly after posting the image they received feedback that the image was offensive,” O’Brien said. “The girls consulted with a parent who explained that their post resembled racially motivated ‘black face’ images and should be taken down immediately. The girls quickly removed the image and posted an apology explaining that they didn’t realize that they could have offended anyone.”
The apology didn’t end the matter.
“In conversations with the girls and their parents we explained that images such as this are offensive and have no place in our school community. Disciplinary consequences were assigned as well as counseling sessions with staff members to increase their understanding of racial sensitivity,” the principal said in the written statement, according to WTNH-TV Channel 8 in New Haven.
Simsbury is a town of about 25,000 people about 10 miles northwest of Hartford. According to the U.S. Census, the town is about 90 percent white, with small populations of (in order) Asians, Latinos, and blacks.