Port Washington high school students displayed pictures at a basketball game of a Nicolet star player making it appear he was wearing blackface that has sparked outrage on social media for the racist overtones such images represent.

Nicolet star player Jalen Johnson, a former Sun Prairie High School star player and currently the top prospect in the state of Wisconsin for the Class of 2020, was the subject of the students’ taunts.

Port Washington Principal Eric Burke apologized on Thursday morning, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

“It’s disappointing,” Burke said. “We’re going to make this right. Apologies have to be made. As a principal, I apologize for our student’s actions, but our students are going to be involved in a sincere apology for what happened and the people who made this happen, there are going to be consequences.”

The Port Washington school district issued a statement later on Thursday stating: “Even if nothing bad was intended, the conduct sends a bad message, intended or not. We at the Port Washington-Saukville School District teach acceptance and respect, and this goes against the mission of our district to educate all students on the importance and value of respecting others. This is an opportunity for all of us to learn to be more accepting of others and embrace our diversity. This conduct can be viewed as harmful and hateful. We condemn such behavior because this is not representative of the values of our District.”

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