A Black History Month cafeteria special of watermelon, fried chicken and cornbread proposed at an all-girls Catholic school has sparked outrage among community members who are denouncing the menu as a celebration of black stereotypes, not history.
Carondelet High School in Concord, Calif. announced Monday it would be serving the meal that week, but reactions from students and parents prompted an assembly and explanatory letter the next day, NBC reports.
"I'd like to apologize for this announcement and any hurt this caused students, parents or community members," principal Nancy Libby stated. "Please know that at no time at Carondelet do we wish to perpetrate (sic) racial stereotypes," adding that she met with leaders of the school’s Black Student Union, who requested the watermelon be removed from the menu.
According to the Associated Press, the items were removed from the menu, and the school will hold an assembly on diversity.
The menu may have been well-intentioned, University of San Francisco professor James Taylor explained, but ultimately honors prejudice against blacks.