What’s the justification for this?!
An Oklahoma mother has come forward alleging that two of her sons — an 8-year-old and a 5-year-old — were removed from their classrooms at school in the city of Ardmore last week because they were wearing Black Lives Matter shirts.
Jordan Herbert told the New York Times that her sons, who attend different schools in the same district, were both taken out of class last week because they wore the shirts to school together that day. Officials at the time claimed the shirts were political in their content, and thus couldn’t be worn at school.
The miffed mom pointed out an inconsistency, though; she alleges her 8-year-old had previously worn his BLM shirt to school at the end of April, at which point the school’s principal told the boy he’d have to wear the shirt inside-out for the rest of the day. WTF?!
After finding out what happened, Herbert went to the principal asking for clarification about the school’s dress code, and was pointed towards the Ardmore City School Superintendent Kim Holland for answers.
According to Herbert, Holland said (below):
“When the George Floyd case blew up, politics will [no longer] be allowed at school.”
But the mom didn’t buy that excuse, responding this way to the idea that BLM shirts are somehow political:
“I told him, once again, a Black Lives Matter T-shirt is not politics.”
So, Herbert pressed officials about their policies regarding students’ freedom of speech.
Per the Times, an online copy of the district’s student handbook simply says that clothing should be “in good taste and school appropriate,” but neglects to mention any specific language banning political contents. The policy goes on to note that “any clothing or apparel that disrupts the learning process is prohibited,” and outlines that each school’s principal “shall make the final decision concerning any question referring to the appropriateness of dress.”
That’s all well and fine, but Herbert took special exemption to the idea that BLM shirts were somehow disruptive to the learning process at all:
“I don’t see Black Lives Matter disrupting anything.”
Even crazier, her oldest son — who is 12 and is in middle school — was not punished at all for wearing his shirt. So why punish the younger kids?!
The American Civil Liberties Union of Oklahoma has already pushed back against the Ardmore school district. The organization sent a letter to district officials reminding them that the students’ choices to wear the shirts are protected by their First Amendment rights.
What do U make of this controversy, Perezcious readers?! Should a school district really be able to tell kids they can’t wear Black Lives Matter shirts to class??
Sound off with your take on this controversy down in the comments (below)…
[Image via Black Lives Matter]