The 17 year old had gone back to school after the Thanksgiving holiday but the school board didn’t approve of his new look and they decided to suspend him indefinitely.
Belonging to an educational institution means accepting that they have certain rules and demands that have to be followed. This typically includes things like being a good student academically, respecting the school community and in some cases wearing the appropriate uniform. It might be considered a little strange if the school regulations included a clause that prohibited students from wearing nail polish in class and states that doing so was sufficient reason for the student’s suspension.
Well, it turns out that in the United States, more specifically in Texas, an openly-gay 17-year-old student called Trevor Wilkinson, was suspended by his school, Clyde High School, for turning up with painted nails after the Thanksgiving holidays.
According to the supposed school regulations, Trevor broke the school’s dress code.
After Wilkinson’s suspension, one of his classmates launched a petition on Change.org demanding that male students be allowed to wear nail varnish, which has accrued more than 69,000 virtual signatures.
Trevor revealed his anger at what had happened in a tweet and initially many people thought it was a joke but when the story was confirmed to be true it was picked up by local news networks.
“Imagine your school not allowing boys to paint their nails and giving boys iss for it. and the whole administration being okay with it, homophobic and sexist? Welcome to West Texas”
–Trevor Wilkinson on Twitter–
The Clyde Independent School District has declined to comment on the specifics of the case but they did make a public statement announcing that they would carry out a thorough review of the school’s dress code to see if the sanction applied to the student was correct.
It turns out the school regulations specify that male students are prohibited from wearing both nail polish and makeup to school and that if the rule is broken, the student would have given the opportunity to correct the problem at school. However Trevor stated on NBC that the rule is discriminatory. The school’s principal confirmed that Trevor could return to classes if he wishes to, but he must remove his nail varnish first, which the student has refused to do.
Trevor Wilkinson is still waiting for the school board to change their position and states that if they don’t he won’t return to classes in a “discriminatory” institution.