An online petition started by a John F. Kennedy High School student compared the school's senior auction to slavery.
The Sacramento City Unified School District said students volunteer to be auctioned off to do entertaining tasks in exchange for money that helps the school fundraise for senior ball.
The Change.org petition claims the auction, "Puts a price on a human being."
The district said after the concerns came to light Kennedy High's principal cancelled the event indefinitely.
"I think in today's environment where there's a lot of insensitivity towards groups of people we need to be very mindful of that," said Sacramento City Unified School District spokesperson Alex Barrios. "Our students are learning from what they hear on TV and what they see, so when we see anything that might mimic some of that rhetoric then it really is something we pay attention to."
The cancellation only affects John F. Kennedy High. Other schools hold similar fundraisers but Barrios said it's up to the schools and students to determine what's best for their campus.