Family upset after yearbook feature mocks fat students

(Source: KBOI/CNN)
(Source: KBOI/CNN)

BOISE, ID (KBOI/CNN) - A family said they are offended by what was inside a middle school yearbook.

There was a quote about twinkies, and many of the comments were directed to overweight people.

The question was light-hearted, "When I hear the word 'twinkie,' I think of..." Yet half the responses printed were harsh and targeted fat people.

"It's always still OK to still make fun of the fat person especially the fat chick," Lee Howard, a parent, said. "It's just always OK, and I don't understand it because it hurts. It hurts just as much."

Reading the quotes, you can tell some of the students know it's wrong, like one comment, which says: "I think of fat kids! Wait is that going in the yearbook? Oh no no no, I think of the Minions from Despicable Me!"

Howard's daughter was especially upset and thought the school was being hypocritical considering their stance on bullying.

"They always advertise anti-bullying, and how bullying is so wrong, but then they put this in the yearbook," Snow White said.

The Meridian School District says that there wasn't the proper oversight in place, and the person who normally looks the yearbook over was absent during critical parts of the process.

But they note an adult should have noticed and taken it out.

"That shouldn't have appeared in the yearbook," Meridian School District spokesman Eric Exline said. "The content is not appropriate. It's sending a message that it's OK to make fun of children for anything, their physical appearance or their demeanor, the kind of things you're really trying to prevent."

For Howard, she said this has been a good teaching experience for her daughter, not just about how to treat people but also how to respond to those who make fun of others.

"Just because someone calls you a name doesn't mean the best response is to wield back with another name," Howard said. "That just bring you down to their level."

The school says it is going to put proper oversight in place, but the district says there likely won't be any disciplinary action.

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