RANCHO CUCAMONGA (CBSLA.com) — A 17-year-old student at Los Osos High School in Rancho Cucamonga pictured in her yearbook photo wearing a hijab was misidentified under the photo as “Isis Phillips,” sparking widespread outrage online.
“I guess I’m Isis in the yearbook…” she said in the post.
The school’s principal, Susan Petrocelli, responded on Twitter Saturday, apologizing and saying the school will work to correct the mistake.
The yearbook also acknowledged the error in a tweet.
Offering a possible reason for the error, Petrocelli told Islamic Monthly that a student named Isis Phillips used to attend Los Osos and is still enrolled in the school district.
“The school reached out to me and had the audacity to say that this was a typo. I beg to differ,” she said in the post.
The incident has caught the attention of the Greater Los Angeles office of the the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA).
“We join with the family in their concern about a possible bias motive for this incident and in the deep concern for their daughter’s safety as a result of being falsely labeled as a member of a terrorist group,” CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush said in a statement. “No student should have to face the humiliation of being associated with a group as reprehensible as ISIS.”
The group said it is calling for a thorough investigation of the incident, and for appropriate punishments to be meted out if warranted.
CBS2’s Jeff Nguyen said the girl’s parents are outraged and believe she has been subjected to an anti-Muslim slur.
Further, they declined to appear on camera but told him they want an investigation into the matter.
Ahmed Baroud is a friend of the child’s father.
“Racism. We feel like… what I’m going to feel?,” said Baroud.
Her father did say over the phone he was shocked and didn’t know how her name is linked to a terror group.
Mansur Majid is an American Muslim who’s a seminary student.
“I don’t think this is an honest mistake. I think this is some kind of wicked joke,” said Majid. “For me, it speaks to my heart because one, I’m Muslim and it hurts to see Islamicphobia happening in America.”
The yearbook committee apologized online saying:
The girl’s father told Nguyen his family is working with a Civil Rights group. They’re planning to meet with school administrators tomorrow.
His daughter will stay home until all sides can work out a solution to fix what happened.
The school was previously at the center of a controversy after the school paper ran an article titled, ‘Is the N-word offensive?’