A racist message was spelled out in captions below the photographs of five seniors in the high school yearbook in this exclusive, mostly white town, school officials said Wednesday.
Superintendent John Whritner said officials and police are investigating whether the five students at Greenwich High School were involved in getting the message - “kill all niggers” - into print.
The epithet was discovered after a student bragged about it to friends, Whritner said. “From there, it spread like wildfire,” he said. “You’d have to be a very eagle-eye proofer to pick it up.”
Seniors, whose photographs appear in alphabetical order by last name, write their own captions. School officials said it is common for them to include inside jokes or messages that only friends will understand.
The racist phrase was spelled out under five photographs scattered throughout the book, which was released Monday.
The word “kill” appeared at the end of a caption under one student’s picture. Under a second photo was the word “all.” The other three pictures had the following letters: “ni,” “gg” and “ers.”
Blacks make up about 3 percent of the public school population in Greenwich, a bedroom community of New York that is home to many celebrities and wealthy business executives. About 2,000 students attend the high school, where commencement exercises are scheduled for Tuesday.