Fla. School Asks Student to Change Abstinence Shirt
A school in Florida asked an 8th-grader to change her t-shirt carrying a message of sexual abstinence that she received at a Christian conference, saying it is "inappropriate." The t-shirt the 15-year-old girl was made to change into said, "Tomorrow I will dress for success."
Summer Schreiner of Cocoa, Fla., wore a t-shirt with the words "Don't drink and park... accidents cause kids" to class at Clearlake Middle. She says she was told by the assistant principal to change it because it was "inappropriate."
"I got through lunch, and on my way back, the assistant principal tells me I need to go to the office and change my shirt," she told Fox 35.
Summer received the shirt the night before at a conference organized by The Silver Ring Thing conference, which seeks to "create a culture shift in America where abstinence becomes the norm again rather than the exception." After teenagers make the pledge of abstinence, they receive a silver ring.
"I was pretty upset. I thought it was silly," Summer said. "It's not like I was wearing a curse word or something that was promoting violence. It's the shirt I got at a conference that is something that is very important to me."
The teen's mother says her daughter was humiliated by asking her change into a shirt that said, "Tomorrow I will dress for success."
"That is what upsets her more," Angela Hogan was quoted as saying. "It was really humiliating for her, because she came dressed for success."
School administrators insists the t-shirt with a message of abstinence was not appropriate, as the school's official dress code policy prohibits "clothing which contains sexually explicit, or oriented wording," and "clothing that infringes on the rights of others."
"This is not a situation of whether or not the district agrees or disagrees with sexual abstinence among teenagers," Michele Irwin, the director of communications for the school district, was quoted as saying. "It's about the fact there is sexual innuendo on the shirt, and so we believe it violated our dress code policy."
Summer disagreed, saying, "If they teach you about sex in the textbooks and stuff, and that's in a textbook, why can't I wear something that is related to it on a t-shirt?" But the school says it will not change its decision or apologize.