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Burnsville high schooler makes offensive sign to ask his date to homecoming

Photos of the sign are causing outrage on social media.
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Making a homemade sign to ask a date to homecoming is normally a sweet gesture for a high schooler.

But the sign a Burnsville high school student made is blowing up on social media for all the wrong reasons.

That's because it says: "You may be picking cotton but I'm picking you. Homecoming?"

A photo of the sign was posted on Facebook Friday night. It shows a young white male standing with his arm around the girl he made the sign for – a black student.

Both students are smiling. A caption over the photo reads: "She actually said yes" with a fearful face emoji and two skull emojis.

The woman who posted the image tagged Burnsville High School and wrote: "This happened at Burnsville High School. America is f*cking great now!!! smdh".

As of Sunday morning, it's been shared nearly 2,500 times and has hundreds of comments.

Plenty of the commenters are angry or calling for the boy's punishment. But others are defending the sign as just a joke between two kids.

The administration responds

Principal Dave Helke sent an email addressing the sign to parents on Saturday afternoon.

"I want to make it clear that the posting does not align with the values of Burnsville High School and Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191," Helke wrote. "We value all students, expect all students to take responsibility for exhibiting that with their peers, and work in many ways to build up each other as a community of caring individuals. This incident is disappointing, to say the least, and directly conflicts with who we are."

The email says the administration will provide "additional support" on Monday for students who want to share concerns or ask questions about the sign.

"We are committed to working with our students in a manner that supports each of them as individuals and helps build up our community moving forward," the note ends.

The Star Tribune says the boy involved in the incident, a junior, took down his social media posts about the sign and put out a public apology on Saturday.

"I made the poster as a joke between my close friend and I and many took it the wrong way and were offended," he wrote in a message posted to Twitter. "I'm sincerely sorry, no intentions were ever to offended [sic] her or anyone of color it was made as a joke."

Helke's email didn't say whether the student will receive any sort of disciplinary action.

Homecoming week kicks off at Burnsville High School on Monday.

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