On Thursday (September 29), Yuba City Unified School District officials received the video of River Valley High School football players acting out a "slave auction" of fellow Black athletes.
The players involved in the “unfortunate and extremely distressing incident” were prohibited from participating in the rest of the football season for violating the student-athlete code of conduct, Superintendent Doreen Osumi said.
River Valley High School moved to forfeit the season as the varsity football team is left without enough members to play.
Osumi called the video “unacceptable” and “deeply offensive," per CNN.
“Re-enacting a slave sale as a prank tells us that we have a great deal of work to do with our students so they can distinguish between intent and impact,” the superintendent said in a written statement to CNN.
“They may have thought this skit was funny, but it is not; it is unacceptable and requires us to look honestly and deeply at issues of systemic racism.”
Students may also face disciplinary consequences for the "prank," Osumi added. The superintendent pledged that the school will implement “education, honest, open discussions and instruction” around racism.
“At this time, the District and site administration are working in earnest to identify lessons and programs to help our student body learn from this situation,” she said. “When students find humor in something that is so deeply offensive, it tells me that we have an opportunity to help them expand their mindset to be more aware, thoughtful, and considerate of others.”