East Bay area California High School cheer team of San Ramon, California was accused of making racist Instagram posts. California High School is part of the San Ramon Valley Unified School District.
The team posted themselves posing with a Black mannequin head that they reportedly named "Kareem," which they referred to as their "mascot."
NBC Bay Area news spoke with school officials about the situation.
Dr. John Malloy, San Ramon Valley Unified School District Superintendent, said:
"That is not something that we can accept, nor will we tolerate."
He expressed deep concern such an incident occurred amidst the district working to expand their sensitivity training and better educate students.
"We don’t accept this."
"We understand that it’s wrong, and we also understand that it’s harming some members of our community more than others—especially those who may identify as Black or African American."
Local organization The Black Bay Area posted a screenshot of the "mascot" and one of the cheerleaders to Instagram and tagged the team asking "what's going on here?"
Twitter seemed generally exasperated about, and very done with, the whole situation.
Many called for the team to face real consequences for their actions.
Angelica Tucker, a parent who lives in the neighborhood, summed up the situation perfectly:
"If they meant it as a statement, they should have clarified that."
"If they meant it as a joke, it’s not funny."
Aditya Sathyanarayanan, a senior at the school, said the situation has been quite divisive on campus.
They said many students don't seem to understand the affect on the greater community.
"They think it’s like a joke, or it’s funny or something like that, and they don’t realize that it actually has implications."