An investigation is underway into a video circulated on social media Monday night showing a group of Weber High School students chanting racial slurs and vulgarities, a Weber School District spokesman said.
District spokesman Lane Findlay said the girls in the video are juniors and seniors at Weber High, and three of them participate on the school’s cheerleading team.
Findlay said that, based on interviews with the three of the girls, the video appears to have been filmed last year during the school’s fall break. The girls recorded themselves inside a vehicle that was not on school property, he said, and the students were not participating in a campus activity at the time.
“The students were on a trip outside of school on their own personal time,” Findlay said in a statement.
But Findlay said in an interview that the video has caused a disruption at school, and that cheerleaders are held to a higher standard of conduct as part of their eligibility for extracurricular activities.
“Right now the focus is on the investigation and trying to answer all the questions that have come up,” Findlay said.
The roughly 10-second video was shared widely on social media platforms. In it, the five girls are heard taking turns saying “F--- n------” and laughing into the camera.
Findlay said it appears the girls were saying “serggin cuff” — that phrase was also posted as a caption for the video on Instagram — and then edited the video to play backwards, producing the offensive language. One of the participating students posted the video on a private account, Findlay said, which was seen by other students, who made the video public on various social media platforms.
Findlay said the potential consequences range from simple counseling to removal from the cheerleading team and expulsion from school.
“All of those things would be on the table,” Findlay said. “Obviously they knew what they were doing. It‘s just completely inappropriate.”
An updated statement from the district released to the public Tuesday afternoon emphasized that the students had made a mistake, but would be held accountable. The district also asked for patience as its probe continues.
“Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken if the students involved are found to have violated the school’s code of conduct,” Findlay said. “ The girls we have spoken with have all been very apologetic for their actions.”