A 17th-century Renaissance painting by Giuseppe Cesari is at the heart of another school censorship controversy.

Housed at the Musée du Louvre in Paris, the display of the 1603 canvas Diana and Actaeon reportedly “disturbed” some students, according to the French newspaper Le Monde.

Cesari’s work, which depicts the hunter Actaeon interfering with the goddess Diana and the surrounding bathing nymphs, was shown during a “vie de classe”, a period for general classroom activities in French schools, to 11 and 12-year-old students at Jacques Cartier school in Issou on December 7.

Several students from the French school also alleged that the teacher made Islamophobic remarks, which the school administration denies, reported the Art Newspaper. Some parents also complained to the school, according to The Times.

In solidarity with the teacher who showed the Cesari painting, staff members at the school refused to work earlier this week. Additionally, staff noted “acts of slander, a multiplication and aggravation of incidents [against staff] and an attack on secularism in a December 8 letter to France’s director of national education services that did not specifically name the incident.

On December 11, the French minister of education Gabriel Attal visited the school and said that the students in question would be reprimanded. The school has since reopened.

This is the second of such controversies to make international headlines in 2023. Earlier this year, the resignation of a Florida principal over the showing of Michelangelo’s nude sculpture David inspired a heated debate over how art history should be taught in the classroom, with the US’s Florida Department of Education forced to declare its “artistic value”.