Are schools over stepping?

Constance - posted on 06/17/2011 ( 42 moms have responded )

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I was reading News Reports on msnbc.com. ( I don't know how to post the links if some one has the patience to show me. I would like that.) The report stated:

Boy wears dress and heels to school, gets suspended.

In Port Orchard, WA, A 15 yr old boy wore a dress and heels to school on Wednesday. It was kinda a challege form his mom. He told her that it wouldn't be that hard to wear heels and she basiclly told him go ahead and try. So he did and decided to wear a dress as well.
When he arrived at school he was suspended until the end of the school year. Later it was changed to 3 days and he is not allowed to participate in the 9th grade dance or field trip.

In the report the show a picture of him in the dress and the heels. The dress was lose fitting and went to his ankles. I realize he is a boy but I eally think the punishment was rediculous. He is a teenage boy that was trying to prove his mom wrong. Isn't that what all teenagers want to do?

How do you feel about this? Was he wrong? His mom? Or the school?

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Kimberly - posted on 06/26/2011

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Heather, I'm a teacher too. If I can mange to instill knowledge and maintain order and adherence to logical rules to 7 year olds dressed in pink tutus and tiger face masks, I'm pretty sure that ways to do the same with older children exist.

I went to high school with a boy who wore skirts to school everyday. He just felt more comfortable in them. One of the principals tried sending him home to change into boy clothes...so he went home and changed and returned...wearing a kilt and carrying bagpipes. After about a week of very bad bagpipe practice at every break and after school (on the sidewalk just outside the school grounds but only about a yard away from the principal's office window) the issue of allowing a BOY to wear a woman's skirt was reviewed and found to be not such a big deal afterall.

And in case you are wondering why he didn't just wear kilts all the time. Kilts cost hundreds of dollars. This kid graduated Magna cum laude from Harvard law and specializes in discrimination against children cases. Obviously, his manner of dress wasn't affecting his ability to learn any.

Johnny - posted on 06/22/2011

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I must agree with the other posters regarding this as a discipline issue. I've always been a very straight-laced person who has never had issues with authority or my teachers. Of course, I haven't had to deal with anyone so close-minded about these kinds of issues. I was a straight A student, in several clubs, track, theatre, and volunteered in the community. While I have always been very "normal" in appearance, many of my fellow rule-abiding, high-achieving, community-minded students were also punks or goths or skids or hippies or flaming or just plain oddly dressed. Fortunately I grew up where most people have the wisdom to understand that appearance is not a direct reflection of character. And also that youth often are exploring their identity through style.

It saddens me that people are still running around with such shallow and judgmental viewpoints. Especially those who teach and are partially responsible for the development of good character in our young people. To me, this may be a small distraction but also offers a "teachable moment" to discuss gender stereotypes and judging a book by its cover. The school just managed to teach entirely the WRONG lesson.

Where I live the school's actions would have actually been illegal and contravene our human rights legislation and our charter of rights and freedoms. So it is unlikely that it would ever happen here forcing me to be one of those horrible people who stands up to a teacher who is being a bigot.

Cyndel - posted on 06/26/2011

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I think the school was rediculous. I mean come on...teens do hilarious and quirky things all the time. i don't see a problem here... just a teen boy more sure of his masculinity and more guts then most grown men I know.

Heather - posted on 06/20/2011

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ugh. I'm sorry but that attitude just makes my job harder. With all the teachers have to do, do we really need to debate every conceivable dress code violation? It's not in the dress code that you can't have a monkey on your head either. Every fall its the same thing, someone has to push the envelope. That's how public schools get uniforms is people just can't use common sense.

Alecia - posted on 07/01/2011

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wow....ur doing more than giving credit to the school. u're outright bashing this kid and u know nothing about him. who says he's a constant trouble maker in school? and the dress was ankle length so what does underwear have to do with anything??? and why should anyone transgendered be offeneded?? ppl are too fucking sensitive now-a-days. it was a boy in a dress...let him be and its much less of a distraction. the more power u give to it, the more of a distraction it becomes. if anything the schools desicion is more of a set back for transgender's than the boy who was wearing the dress

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Heather - posted on 07/09/2011

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Ummm....a kilt isn't a dress. Nor did this boy wear a dress as an expression of his nationality, faith, or sexuality. If he'd done that, then maybe I'd say the student has a case. This kid did this on a DARE...from his MOTHER! The maturity level of the parent involved would indicate to me that this kid has NO boundaries and is most likely a constant discipline problem-which is why the school reacted so harshly so quickly. Should they have just asked him to go home and change? Probably, but if the mom let him leave the house dressed like that, then what would make anyone think she'd come and pick him up so he could change. And if she works,(I'm assuming she's a single mom based on the fact that there's no mention of the dad's opinion) she wouldn't have been able to just up and leave and bring the kid clothes. Telling him to change may seem to be the easy answer, but we really have no background on this story or any information besides what the mom and kid SAID happened.

LadyJane - posted on 07/08/2011

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OMG! Geesh. That boy should have just been sent home to change. No big deal. When I was in school we actually did have a boy wearing kilts in my class. His mom would actually sew them herself. No one had an issue with it, He got straight A's and never caused an issue with other students either. Of course some laughed but it never bothered him cause he had the backing of the principal. If he didn't have to move he would have graduated with me.

I had a teacher fired for discrimination, just because she decided that any student of a nationality that opposed hers was a problematic child.

Constance - posted on 07/06/2011

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A boy wearing a dress is not him being disruptive. He is being an individual. It doesn't make him a bad kid because he expresses the way he wants to. He wore a damn dress and high heels. Get over it.

Brie - posted on 07/06/2011

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teresa how was the boy "trying" to be disruptive? It was something between his mother and him. Thats ridiculous

Teresa - posted on 07/06/2011

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The boy was trying to be disruptive and should have been told to go home and change. That should have been the end of it.

Jennifer - posted on 07/01/2011

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This was just a silly thing between a kid and his mom. The school should have had someone bring him or provide proper clothing and then be done with it, since the mom was foolish enough to let her son go to school like that. I would NEVER send my kid off to school in something I thought would be disruptive or inappropriate for school.

Heather - posted on 07/01/2011

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Also, transgendered people work really hard to overcome adversity in schools from wearing opposite gendered clothing and what this boy did sets them back significantly. If I were a transgendered boy at that school, I would feel ridiculed and demoralized by this kid and I would DEFINTIELY want him punished.

Heather - posted on 07/01/2011

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I can appreciate a boy who is transgendered or has been wearing girls clothes from the beginning of school, but this kid was trying to create a disturbance. I'm sure the school even asked him to change clothes. Most likely, he became beligerant and refused and THAT is what caused the suspension. So now, mom and son run to the media and say, "They suspended me for wearing a dress!" and our media, without doing any actual investigation, puts it out as a descimination case. We all know the mindset of most teenage boys. They're horny and rowdy and like to goof off(this is a majority, not every boy). For all we know, the kid wasn't even wearing underwear under the dress and the school was taking a hard stand with a continuous trouble maker. All I'm saying is that it would be nice if a few of us gave the school the benefit of the doubt instead of assuming the mother and boy are "innocent" of any wrong doing.

Stifler's - posted on 06/27/2011

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Is it illegal for boys to wear dresses now? Are girls allowed to wear this to school? The school is wrong, this is ridiculous.

Jessie - posted on 06/24/2011

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The school should of just told him to change clothes and advise him to resume his normal attire from then on. I can see where this would be a distraction but not warrant suspension or this big of a deal. Also, as a mom I would have had my son do this on a weekend, not so much at school. It is a learning environment and I know teachers already have a hard enough time these days without the extra stuff. Either way though way overkill on the schools part.

Alecia - posted on 06/21/2011

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"Parents with this attitude, usually had problems in school themselves and have problems with any authority
in general." u couldnt be more wrong!!! i have never and still do not have any issues with authority and did terrific in school and loved and was loved by many of my teachers and principals. i was involved in many different sports, clubs and organizations. so u can think w/e u want, but it certianly isnt the truth. parents who care more about education and people's rights are the ones who try and better their kids and the schools, and that has nothing to do with what society deems as proper attire in schol

Constance - posted on 06/21/2011

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@Lori I think the whole point of him wearing it to school was to prove that he could dress just like his mom and his feet wouldn't hurt after he wore them all day. Plus it would have been the only way he could have proved that did it all day.

Brie - posted on 06/21/2011

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@heater
Aside from a school with uniforms you show me a dress code where it states that boys can't wear girls clothes and girls can't wear boys clothes.. and as far as professionals as long as the dress or suit fit the dress code they don't specify which gender is allowed to wear them that would be grounds for a lawsuit... nobody is attacking you just pointing out where you are wrong.. and if you ask me the boy and his mom have grounds for a lawsuit!! a wonderful little thing called discrimination... it scares me to know that, if you are the kind of person to make the kid leave and not the ones actually causing the issue, you are a teacher! it is in no shape or form your perogative to judge your students... you are there to teach and thats it not judge the children you teach or stereotype them!

Lori - posted on 06/21/2011

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I think his mother should have discouraged him from going to school dressed like that. A boy going to school in a dress is going to cause a distraction. Should the school suspend him ? No. absolutely not they should have made him change clothes like they would if a girl came dressed in a skirt to short and the dance or field trip shouldn't even be an issue. This boy could have made his point at home
without all the nonsense. I think the boy was just being a teenager like you said and the school is wrong.

Constance - posted on 06/21/2011

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Again you made the statement that kids that push the bounderies should be punished. In this article he did absolutly nothing to anyone and didn't break any dress code.

My kids know how to behave and yes IF they break a rule then yes there is consequenses. I understand you have to have control of your classroom, but if a kid walks in wearing a dress and other students stat to talk about it and are rowdy. Then they are breaking the rules not the peson wearing the dress or having rainbow colored hair. I am sure you are very capable of telling them to settle down and to pay attention. If they don't listen do they get in trouble for disrupting the class or the kid sitting and paying attention? The way you have been talking is that the peson who actually breaks the rule will be punished. Or have you deemed the kid that dresses differently is the only problem and will always be the one who gets in trouble. Seems to me that it should be the kid runs their mouth should be punished.

Heather - posted on 06/21/2011

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Again, you are attacking me personally having no idea how I teach. Every good teacher has full command and control of her classroom. If I have a rule and a child breaks it whether or not the parent agrees with it, they will be punished. If you are actively encouraging your child to break rules and treat teachers as adversaries you are setting your child up for failure.

Constance - posted on 06/21/2011

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Heather you are way to judgemental to be working in a school system. I take full offense to your statement that because we do not agree with teaches like you that we had problems in school or with authority in general.

Nope you are wrong again, sorry. I was completely in a Gothic state in high school. Mohawk, black hair, nails, and lips. Black steel toed boots, and all black clothing. Different yes caused problem no. 4.0 GPA from 7th grade on thru graduation. Never suspended, no detention, never even a right up. My teachers had enough open mindedness to know I dressed differently but I was just as intelligent as everyone else. Problem with authority nope. My mom and dad were both active duty military and my house was run like a military command. I grew up with rules and guess what I followed them. As my friends did in school and their homes.
If you are going to be this judgemental then change perfession because I would never allow a person like you near any of my children. You are the reason why parents have problems with the public school system.

Heather - posted on 06/21/2011

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Parents with this attitude, usually had problems in school themselves and have problems with any authority
in general. In my classroom, I have rules to induce order so I can get my job done ie teach the children.
If you do not have rules and everyone just does whatever they want, you cannot teach; but boy wouldn't that be fun! Your generalization about teachers not caring about bullying shows your ignorance about the topic as well as the influence that media has on you. You have no idea what kind of teacher I am, so for you to say such a statement is troubling as to your emotional stability.
It is parents that want to challenge the school system at every turn, want every teacher to be an adversary and not teach their children that they need to follow rules, or at least know the correct way to change them is what is breaking down our public school systems.

Alecia - posted on 06/21/2011

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ridiculous....why are we focusing attention on something so silly??? teachers should give a rats ass about the kids who are beat up and emotionally abused...not this one kid who was having some fun (that his mom agreed with). get over it. if my kid (or me back in highschool) had a teacher like u Heather, i would move them. its closed mindedness that is messing up schools and this country, not some boy wearing a dress. hell in the 6th grade one of my guy friends was a woman for Halloween. it was one of the funniest things ive seen, but it wasnt a 'distraction' and certianly no one had a prblm with it

April - posted on 06/21/2011

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he shouldn't have been punished for that. what if he were a trannsexual or gender confused or something along those lines? would those people be punished too?

Constance - posted on 06/20/2011

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Also to add about this paticular school and district. I was reading local posts from residents of the area. It seems as though anyone who does something a little different pays for it with suspention or being expelled. But yet the kids who are being bullied get no protection. Sothey also go to school on a day to day basis being hit wih books in the head, called foul names, and have their lunches stepped on, but once again the kid who wore a dress is punished.

Yeah that makes sense be a little quirky lose your right to learn. Beat the crab out of somebody give them a medal. Call some one a horiable name it's ok they will get over it.
People wonder why kids snap just as adults they can't handle it anymore. and no one will help. Yep they are the bad ones.

Constance - posted on 06/20/2011

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There is way too much and I mean too much judgement in schools and it begins with teachers who think kids should walk a straight line. When in fact the kids I grew up with and my kids that walk in zig zag are happy with who they are. As long as my kids still are doing what they are suppost to then I am fine with the zig zag.
Teacher should never judge a child based on how they dress. Only on how the student behaves. If another student can't handle someonebeing different then it is our job as adults to help them learn. Judge from the inside out not the other way around.

Johnny - posted on 06/20/2011

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If I were his mother I would absolutely challenge this. It's time for us to learn to get over our stupid ideas about what "makes a man" just like we are trying to do with what it means to be a woman. It's laughable that women want to be treated equally with men and then turn around and support this kind of discrimination. If a man showed up to my work in a dress, he'd probably get some comments. He definitely would not be sent home, written up or in any way disciplined. I work for a construction industry corporation and it's not even that backwards! He'd get less harassment than my co-worker who is coming to work every day wearing a Boston Bruins jersey here in Vancouver!

Constance - posted on 06/20/2011

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My husband orks for a furtune 500 company and there are a couple of people that do wear dresses but their birth certificates say they are male. Nope no consequenses. Yes different but not bad. It doesn't hurt the company at all. They do their job and that is all that matters to thm. They even conduct buisness with clients. Yet stll no problems.

Heather - posted on 06/20/2011

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Listen, if you worked in a mainstream job, and you came to work in a dress, as a man, you'd be sent home. You want to be a man and wear a dress, do it, but break the rules and you get the consequences.

Constance - posted on 06/20/2011

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So you are saying that any kid who expresses themselves differently from what you want are problems?

Constance - posted on 06/20/2011

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I agree there is a dress code in my area as well, but no where in the ruls does it specify if only a girl can wear something or only a boy can wear certain clothing. If kids are attending a school with uniforms then that changes things. Unless it specificly bans a boy from wearing a dress then it isn't breaking any rules.

Heather - posted on 06/20/2011

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It would be a disturbance in class. I would not even let him in the door to my room. There is too much learning going on to debate such a topic. That needed to be carried on outside of school. There is a dress code, go to the school board if you don't like it.

Constance - posted on 06/20/2011

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@Heather, What is wrong with what he did? I have a few good friends who are transgender (although not in this case) 2 of which dressed as the opposite sex every single day in High School and they never got suspended. What part of this constitutes suspention? He didn't hurt anyone, he was making fun of anyone who is transgender or gay. He didn't hit on anyone. He took a challege from his mom and went al the way with it.
Please explain what you believe is so bad that he was suspended for this. I am curious.

Heather - posted on 06/20/2011

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The school went overboard at first, but 3 days was absolutely fair. It is hard enough to keep control of a classroom, things like this can not be tolerated. No way.

JuLeah - posted on 06/19/2011

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He was not wrong. His mom was not wrong. They school might deal with a judge over this. Wow .... 2011, are we not beyond this???? Girls can wear pants, but boys can't wear dresses in this country? I know in many countries and cultures they do, but ... well, what is wrong with us?

Brie - posted on 06/18/2011

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thats ridiculous.. seriously.. kids go to school in pajamas and everythng else... not to mention he actually does look like a girl for the most part lol.. i agree if there was an issue then they should have just sent him home to change or called his mom to bring new clothes!

Constance - posted on 06/17/2011

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I do agree they should have just requested to have him change. Schools you would thinkwould find an actual problem and fix that. He shouldn't have been suspended for what he was wearing. It is like He found little skin tight, short black dress.

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Constance - posted on 06/17/2011

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Sara, Where do I click to do that? I have tried different things and I still can't get sem to figure it out.

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I like that challenge from his mom. That punishment seems way too harsh to me. If they had that much of an issue with his clothing then why couldn't they just ask him to go home and change or have his mom bring in a new outfit? Although I think schools seem to be getting their panties in a bunch over silly things lately. Don't they have more important things to do?

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