School officials worried the gesture will become more closely associated with white supremacy, and could harm students when they’re applying to colleges or jobs.
“My understanding is [yearbook staff] followed protocol,” she said. “Things in this country change so rapidly. I don’t want anyone to think we are accusing our students of anything. For us, it was the impact of what the publication could have on the student body.”
Options like cutting pages out of the yearbook or placing stickers over the photos were considered, but deemed infeasible, Pruitt-Adams said.
It’s expected to take three to four weeks to receive the new yearbooks. In the meantime, the school has ordered 2,200 autograph books for students to collect signatures in.