A New Jersey school stirred controversy last week after assigning students a project that included creating slave auction posters for class.
As CBS New York reports, students at South Mountain Elementary School were given an assignment that consisted of students selecting a colony to research before creating a colorful poster advertising an event that might occur during that time period.
Several parents posted their distaste on social media, including Jamil Karriem, who shared photos as well.
“Educating young students on the harsh realities of slavery is of course not the issue here, but the medium for said education is grossly insensitive and negligent… it breaks my heart that these will be the images that young black and brown kids see of people with their skin color,” the post read.
“I am mortified… these images actually hurt my heart,” said parent Susan Hyon.
School Superintendent John Ramos responded to the controversy in a statement saying, “One of the anti-bias experts highlighted the fact that schools all over our country often skip over the more painful aspects of American History.”
“We need to do a better job of acknowledging the uglier parts of our past, so that children learn the full story,” the note read.
The posters are no longer hanging on the walls. In addition to district officials apologizing to parents, the school is also planning a town hall meeting to discuss the project.
A spokesperson said that it has not yet been decided if the assignment will be used again.