A senior prank has turned sour after a photo of a group of McDowell students standing in front of a cardboard wall with the caption “We built the wall first” appeared on Instagram.
McDowell High School Principal Edwin Spivey said Friday the group of seniors was not authorized originally to build the wall as part of the prank, and they had only asked to use balloons, confetti and plastic cups to decorate the school.
Presidential candidate Donald Trump has said during his campaign that he is going to target illegal immigrants by making Mexico build a wall along the border of the United States.
Spivey said the students asked permission to pull a prank and were allowed to come into the school with teacher supervision Wednesday night. He said during that time, the idea of the cardboard wall was brought up.
“The teacher felt uncomfortable with it, but it was built. At one point one of the kids wanted to put a Trump logo on it and immediately was told he couldn’t do that,” Spivey told the newspaper. “The wall was not agreed to originally.”
He said the general population of students saw the wall when they came to school Thursday morning, but it was taken down before class began. He said after the photo was posted though, the situation spun out of control.
“I have met with several Hispanic students and students in general who were upset by it,” Spivey said. “I told them that McDowell High School did not condone or support anything that was derogatory or inflammatory.”
He said the school is going to talk to the students about the effects of social media, the influences it can have and how it can sway perceptions.