California Teacher Forces Minority Students to Pose With Fake Knives and Guns for Yearbook

Minority students at Yucca Valley High School in California are worried that staged yearbook photographs of them holding fake knives, guns and bombs could haunt them in the future.


Beth Gonzales told KESQ that she was hoping to be remembered as “class clown,” but instead was voted “teacher’s worst nightmare.”

When Gonzales showed up for yearbook photos, she said that a teacher handed her a fake knife.

“How am I going to be looked at in the future?” Beth Gonzales explained. “Am I going to be that girl with the knife in the picture?”

Beth’s mother, Corinna Gonzales, accused the school of “racial profiling.”

“You’ve got a young black man with a gun, and a young Hispanic girl with a knife,” she pointed out.

After online comments tried to link the yearbook photo to ISIS, the family began to worry that Beth’s hope of joining the Navy could be in jeopardy.

“I mean how is the military going to accept me if I represent ISIS?” Beth Gonzales wondered.

While Corinna Gonzales said that no one from the school system had returned her calls, Superintendent Tom Baumgarten insisted to KESQ that he was concerned about the photos.

“In today’s world, there may be many interpretations of a picture,” Baumgarten admitted. “But anything that has a gun or a knife portrayed in a school setting can cause people concerns.”

“We have talked to the adviser. There was no malicious intent by the adviser, the students, the administration, or the district to portray anybody in a negative manor,” he added. “We apologize if it did.”

Baumgarten said that the school has no plans to reprint the yearbooks.

Watch the video below from KESQ, broadcast May 30, 2016.

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

#story_page_post_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}