LETHBRIDGE. – An Alberta high school graduation party with a “cowboys and Indians” theme prompted administrators to call an assembly to discuss racism.
Images of students from Chinook High School in Lethbridge appeared on social media and showed attendees at the privately-held party wearing headdresses, war paint and feathers.
A statement from Lethbridge School District 51 says staff and students at Thursday’s assembly talked about the importance of being publicly involved in the “deep discussion of First Nations racism.”
CTV and the Lethbridge Herald reported that some of the students also released a statement where they apologized and asked for forgiveness from the indigenous community.
“We formally apologize for offending anyone by having a Grad party entitled ‘Cowboys and Indians.’ We had no intention of purposely hurting or offending anyone,” said the statement provided to the Herald.
Indigenous student Payton Weasel Head, who is in Grade 10, said he saw pictures of students wearing Listerine bottles on their heads like headdresses.
The statement from the students denied the allegation that Listerine bottles were worn as headdresses, and said most students dressed as cowboys.