Lake Catholic issues apology to Villa Angela-St. Joseph for student’s comment

MENTOR, Ohio – A social media firestorm is now turning into real-world consequences for one Lake Catholic High School student after posting a video with derogatory comments towards an opposing high school basketball team.

The incident happened during a Saturday Lake Catholic basketball game versus Villa Angela – St. Joseph (VASJ). In the video the student says “the coolest monkeys in the jungle,” while showing African-American players on the opposing team.

“It’s not something we condone here at Lake Catholic,” said high school president Mark Crowley. “…We've already talked to the students involved. We'll talk to them in regards, in alignment, to our handbook. We'll have a conversation between the school and family.”

Bill Cervenik, president of VASJ says he has accepted the apology issued by Crowley on behalf of the school. He hopes students will learn to see past differences instead of pointing them out.

“We're going to learn regardless of people's predictors or misunderstandings, we're all on this earth for the same reason,” said Cervenik. “…As Catholics and Christians one of the most important things we can do is forgive.”

According to Crowley, specific discipline for the students involved will not be made public. The school, boasting 700 students in grades 9-12, was in the process of forming a diversity club prior to this incident with the goal of fostering an environment of understanding. The first student meeting will occur this week.