Greeley yearbooks recalled by administration due to offensive language
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
by Adriana Miano
Last Thursday, the 2012 Greeley yearbook staff began distribution of their always greatly anticipated final product: The 2012 Greeley Yearbook. After slightly more than 100 of the 700 copies of the yearbook that had been ordered were distributed, it was discovered that one senior had included in his personal statement an offensive phrase. In response to the discovery, Greeley administrators issued a recall for the yearbooks and temporarily suspended further yearbook distribution pending the correction of this error.
The administration fashions a remedy
Later that day, Louise Brady, the yearbook advisor who teaches in the art department, Principal Andrew Selesnick and Assistant Principal and Class Principal for the Class of 2012 Mark Bayer sent out the following letter through Infinite Campus to the seniors and the Greeley community.
Dear Greeley Seniors,
This message is for all seniors who collected their yearbooks today. Most unfortunately, we discovered only after yearbooks began to be distributed that one of our students managed to slip some offensive language past the editors and advisor, and that language appears on one page in the published book. We are already addressing the matter seriously and appropriately with the student.
In the meantime, we are disappointed and embarrassed to have printed a yearbook that includes such language, and we will not be distributing any further yearbooks until we have a chance to correct the offending page. We are asking that all seniors who have already collected their books return them so that we may make the correction. If you will simply put your name in the book, and return it to Ms. Brady in the art department, we will make sure that you get the very same book back. Unfortunately, at this time, we cannot be sure how long it will take us to make the correction, but we will make it a priority to correct senior books first.
We apologize for this inconvenience.
Louise Brady, Advisor
Mark Bayer, Assistant Principal
Andrew Selesnick, Principal
According to Principal Selesnick, only a handful of books were returned on Friday. And word on the street is that most seniors who got the offending version are hugging it tight and have no intention of returning it for “correction.”
Many students view the recall as an unnecessary course of action. “Personally, I think the recall may cause more problems than it would solve,” said Greeley senior Cyndi Bonacum. “I totally understand the administration’s need to correct the mistake, but no one I’ve talked to seems to be very offended by the language.”
At the Senior Awards Ceremony yesterday, co-editors of the yearbook, Colleen Powers and Annie Mester, announced that the corrected yearbooks would be available for distribution to seniors today. Class principal Mark Bayer explained that the offensive language had been covered with a black sticker supplied by the yearbook company that said, in effect, that the perpetrator was sorry for the inconvenience suffered by anyone due to the late distribution of the yearbook caused by “my poor judgment.” When asked if the sticker could be removed, Assistant Principal Bayer responded, “Not without ripping the page.”
The offensive language was spelled out when read vertically, using the first letter of each line of a series of simple declarative sentences.
Adriana Miano, a 2009 Greeley graduate, is a rising senior at Elon University, where she writes for The Pendulum, Elon University’s Student News Organization.