A Mississippi high school agreed to make 2 white students co-winners of top honors after their parents complained about the awarding of prizes to Black pupils
A high school awarded white students top honors after selecting two black students.
Parents at a school in Mississippi claimed they miscalculated the goodbye and greeting criteria.
The school broke with tradition and eventually named two white students as co-valedictorians and co-salutatorians.
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A Mississippi high school named two white students co-valedictorians and co-salutators, even though two black students had received these top honors a few days earlier, the New York Times reported.
West Point High School students Ikeria Washington and Layla Temple, both black, were named farewell and greetings for their class during a senior awards ceremony last week.
However, the announcement did not go down well with some families, and shortly afterwards the white parents of two students complained to the school that it had not properly calculated the criteria for determining the two names.
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After reviewing the student handbook, West Point School District Superintendent Burnell McDonald announced an error had occurred and, breaking a longstanding tradition, appointed two additional students (both white) as co-valedictorians and co-salutatorians .
McDonald, who is Black, told Mississippi Today that the advisor who calculated the grades was new to the school and had given incorrect information about how the labels should be determined.
Washington and Temple had won based on the highest Quality Point Average (QPA) but not the Grade Point Average (GPA).
Washington's family told the New York Times the announcement "upset" their daughter and they are considering filing a lawsuit.
"She cried. She thought it was going to be her night," Ikeria's mother, Angela Washington, told the Times.
On the graduation evening, all four students gave their speeches.
This is not the first time a school has raised questions about top academic positions. Earlier this year, a high school student in the small town of Alpine, Texas, sued her school after alleging the school had failed to rank her grades.
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