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Story highlights

Photos show students wearing pillowcases over their heads, statement by the Citadel says

School president says suspension proceedings against involved students will begin

(CNN) —  

The Citadel, a public military college in South Carolina, says it is investigating photos posted on social media that show cadets wearing pillowcases over their heads – costumes reminiscent of the Ku Klux Klan.

Images of Citadel cadets wearing pillowcases were circulated on social media.
From Facebook
Images of Citadel cadets wearing pillowcases were circulated on social media.

Do U.S. colleges have a race problem?

The school will begin suspension proceedings for involved cadets, school President Lt. Gen. John W. Rosa said in a statement.

“These images are not consistent with our core values of honor, duty and respect,” Rosa said, calling the photos “offensive and disturbing.”

The photos show an upper-class student in front of seven cadets, the statement said. The cadets are wearing white pants, white T-shirts and white pillowcases with eye holes while holding pieces of paper in front of their eyes.

Preliminary reports are that the students “were singing Christmas carols as part of a ‘Ghosts of Christmas Past’ skit,” the statement said.

The Citadel, founded in 1842, has about 2,300 undergraduates making up the Corps of Cadets, the school website says.