Yearbook labels students 'retarded,' school apologizes and promises to reprint books

(NBC) - Seniors at Texas' Mesquite High School will have to wait to pick up their yearbooks because of two errors in the publication.

Some of the special needs students in a section recognizing them were labeled "mentally retarded."

The school also did not have parental permission to publish their photos.

The high school noticed the errors on Friday when it was distributing the annual.

School administrators are apologizing for the errors.

"It was not meant to disparage anyone in any way," district spokeswoman Laura Jobe said. "It was just an error that was overlooked and got printed, unfortunately."

The school collected all the yearbooks with errors and sent them back to the publisher for reprinting.

Jobe said the school apologized to the parents of the students in the section with errors.

"The principal did call the parents on Friday evening -- the parents of the students who were in that section -- and explained to them what had happened," she said. "They were extremely understanding."

Seniors at the school such as Alexandra Doverspike and Iman Hijaz said it was an honest mistake.

"You know everybody wants to be included, not left out," Hijaz said. "I think it was nice to make the page."

"I feel like everybody makes mistakes, and it's fixable," Doverspike said.

The school district plans to implement additional training for staff members who work with yearbook production.

Seniors will be able to receive their revised yearbooks on Wednesday.
 


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