Boston's venerable Museum of Fine Arts has apologized to a group of minority middle school students who say they were subjected to racism by staff during a field trip.
Museum officials in a letter posted on their website Wednesday apologized to the students and staff at the Helen Y. Davis Leadership Academy in the city's Dorchester neighborhood for "a range of challenging and unacceptable experiences that made them feel unwelcome."
School Principal Arturo Forrest tells The Boston Globe he was told that one museum staff member told the students "no food, no drink, and no watermelon." He heard other reports of museum security following his students while leaving white students alone.
Forrest said about 30 seventh grade students were on last week's field trip, all students of color.
The Globe said patrons also made disparaging comments toward students. One reportedly told a female student to pay attention in the museum in order to avoid a career as a stripper.
"It's an unfortunate lesson to learn, but inevitably it's something we all go through as people of color," Forrest told the Globe.