On Wednesday, grade 6 student Reese Webster got up for school and dressed in her school’s uniform T-shirt, suede booties and a button-up denim skirt — one she’d already worn several times in the first few weeks of the school year at Moultrie Middle School in Mount Pleasant, S.C.
A few hours later, her mom Suzie got a call from Reese in the principal’s office, asking her to bring her a pair of pants because her skirt was deemed “too short” for the classroom.
“Now those of you who know me well, know that I am a very laid back, super chill Mom, who tends to let her girls fight their own battles in life. However, this one hit me the wrong way,” Suzie wrote in a Facebook post.
“I found out that Reese was called out in the hallway surrounded by other kids and told to go to the office because her skirt was too short and needed to be replaced. Also, the teacher told her she looked like she should ‘be clubbing,'” Suzie continued. “What? I don’t know too many women who wear a boxy T-shirt and an A-line preppy denim skirt to go clubbing. Perhaps it was her scandalous ankle boots.”
It gets worse. Reportedly, when Reese was in the office, school officials got out a measuring tape to measure if the skirt fell within the school’s rules of being no more than 5 inches above the knee — it did. According to Suzie, at that point, the school backtracked and said Reese could continue wearing the skirt.
“However at this point she was so embarrassed that she asked to change into her pants and told him she would not wear the skirt again,” she said. Suzie added that Reese kept apologizing throughout the whole ordeal.
In her Facebook post, Susie explained that she didn’t take issue with the school enforcing dress code (which Reese’s outfit fell within anyway), but rather they way they did it.
“I told the principal during my rant, that I felt that it was madly inappropriate for my daughter to be humiliated in front of other students and if there was concern about her meeting the dress code there was a more tactful way vs. a public shaming,” she wrote.
“While Reese was changing, her Principal, Mr. Cumberback started to explain to me that it was necessary to closely monitor the girls attire because boys at this age get very distracted by the girls and their appearance. So in order to control this, they needed to make sure the skirts were long enough etc. WTH?! This is the exact problem with society today. SO MY DAUGHTER WAS EMBARRASSED, HUMILIATED IN FRONT OF HER PEERS AND MADE TO FEEL LIKE A BAD GIRL BECAUSE BOYS CAN’T CONTROL THEIR DIRTY THOUGHTS!?” Suzie said. “I have to say he didn’t get to finish his entire argument because I asked him to please stop talking and told him the above. Even after I said that to him he still felt the need to explain to Reese how inappropriate boys’ thoughts are. She kindly said she understood because she had problems with boys at her elementary school (sad but true).”
Despite all the ridiculousness, Suzie said that she was very proud of how Reese kept it together throughout the whole ordeal. But she said that, understandably, both her and her daughter were disappointed.
“I understand there has to be a line, but shouldn’t the emphasis be on teaching our sons to be gentlemen and focus on their school work, not how much skin our daughters are showing? It really is hard enough to raise girls to have positive self esteem and a good body image without worrying that they are being shamed by their teachers and administrators,” she said. “Everyone has different body shapes and it is sad to think that girls who may be more developed are called out because of how they look in their clothes, this is just plain wrong.”
So far, the school has yet to comment on the matter.
What do you think about how the school handled this 6th grader’s skirt? Let us know by tweeting @YahooStyleCA.