New York school apologizes for serving chicken, waffles and watermelon for Black History Month lunch
The Feb. 1 lunch meal consisted of "items that reinforce negative stereotypes concerning the African-American Community," the principal said.
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A New York middle school is apologizing for serving what it called an "inexcusably insensitive" meal of chicken and waffles with watermelon on the first day of Black History Month.
Nyack Middle School Principal David Johnson, who is black, said in a letter to parents last week that external food service provider Aramark provided food that differed from the original monthly menu.
"The offering of chicken & waffles as an entree with watermelon as a dessert on the first day of Black History Month was inexcusably insensitive and reflected a lack of understanding of our district's vision to address racial bias," he wrote.
The Feb. 1 lunch meal consisted of "items that reinforce negative stereotypes concerning the African-American Community," Johnson said.
Aramark, which was originally scheduled to serve Philly cheesesteak, broccoli and fresh fruit, said: "While our menu was not intended as a cultural meal, we acknowledge that the timing was inappropriate, and our team should have been more thoughtful in its service."
The food provider said it will partner with the school district to have some of its staffers participate in training.
"We believe this will provide a good learning opportunity to deepen understanding on the impact of systemic biases and negative stereotypes concerning the African-American community," Aramark said.
Nyack, about 45 minutes outside of Manhattan, has a population of roughly 7,200 people, 20.5% of whom are black, according to Census data.