Yearbook photo misnames student in hijab as 'Isis,' sparking outrage

Sunday, May 8, 2016
Yearbook photo misnames student in hijab as 'Isis,' sparking outrage
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A student wearing a hijab was misidentified in her yearbook photo as "Isis Phillips" at Los Osos High School in Rancho Cucamonga, sparking online anger.

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (KABC) -- Yearbooks are on sale at Los Osos High School in Rancho Cucamonga - a keepsake for many graduating seniors.

But to one student photographed wearing a hijab, the yearbook is an insult.

She is not 11th grader Isis Phillips. But that's how her picture in the yearbook identified her.

The student named Bayan Zehlif posted the picture on Facebook with the caption:

"I am extremely saddened, disgusted, hurt and embarrassed that the Los Osos High School yearbook was able to get away with this. Apparently I am 'Isis' in the yearbook. The school reached out to me and had the audacity to say that this was a typo. I beg to differ, let's be real."

The misnamed photo later went viral on social media.

Trevor Santellan, one of the students who worked on the yearbook, said there actually was a student named Isis Phillips at Los Osos who transferred earlier in the year.

The school's yearbook account has tweeted an apology, stating it was an unintentional mistake.

"We are extremely sorry for what occurred in the Yearbook. ... It is our fault and this is absolutely inexcusable on our part," the tweet said.

The school principal has also apologized and said the mistake is being investigated.

The Chaffey Joint Union High School District released this statement:

"We are investigating to figure how this happened and we are certainly sensitive to the young lady. We have been in contact with the family and will continue to work with them to determine how this could happen and how we can remedy the situation."

The Council on American-Islamic Relations has been in contact with the student and her family and said she will likely not return to school "until the issue is resolved appropriately."

CAIR-LA said in a press release Sunday it is calling for a thorough investigation of the misprint.

"We join with the family in their concern about a possible bias motive for this incident and in the deep concern for their daughter's safety as a result of being falsely labeled as a member of a terrorist group," said CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush. "No student should have to face the humiliation of being associated with a group as reprehensible as ISIS."