- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 28, 2007

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) Newark’s school district said Monday it regretted ordering a picture of a male student kissing his boyfriend blacked out from all copies of a high school yearbook and apologized to the student.

Andre Jackson, the student, said he was disappointed that the superintendent had not delivered the apology face to face and in public. Because of that, he said he didn’t accept it as sincere. “I would accept an apology a public apology,” said Mr. Jackson, 18.

The district issued a statement Monday saying that it would issue an unredacted version of the yearbook to any student of East Side High School who wants one.

“The decision was based, in part, on misinformation that Mr. Jackson was not one of our students, and our review simply focused on the suggestive nature of the photograph,” the district said. “Superintendent Marion A. Bolden personally apologizes to Mr. Jackson and regrets any embarrassment and unwanted attention the matter has brought to him.”

Mr. Jackson said his sexual orientation was never a problem at school. “I’ve never had to deal with this before,” he said. “It’s shocking. It’s crazy.”