Male Texas teen suspended from school for wearing nail polish

A high schooler in Texas is accusing his school of a “double standard” for male students after he was given an in-school suspension for wearing nail polish to class. 

Trevor Wilkinson, a senior at Clyde High School in Clyde, Texas, received the suspension measure after returning to school following the Thanksgiving holiday with his nails painted.

“Imagine your school not allowing boys to paint their nails and giving boys iss for it,” he tweeted Monday. “And the whole administration being okay with it, homophobic and sexist? welcome to west texas.”

The nail polish violates the school’s dress code for boys, according to the Clyde High School Student Handbook. Male students are not allowed to wear make up or nail polish.

“If the campus administrator determines that a student’s grooming or clothing violates the school’s dress code, the student will be given an opportunity to correct the problem at school. If not corrected, the student may be assigned to in-school suspension for the remainder of the day, until the problem is corrected, or until a parent or designee brings an acceptable change of clothing to the school,” the handbook reads.

But Wilkinson, who said that he was given the opportunity to remove the nail polish to avoid suspension, argued that the punishment is a “complete double standard because girls are allowed to paint and get their nails done.”

“Not only that, but freedom of expression is validation enough that the dress code and policy is not okay. I am a gay male and I’m beyond proud. This is unjust and not okay,” the 17-year-old high schooler wrote in a Change.Org petition calling on the school to allow male students to wear nail polish. The petition has garnered over 41,000 signatures as of Saturday. 

“Help me show that it is okay to express yourself and that the identity that society wants to normalize is not okay. I am a human. I am valid. I should not get in trouble for having my nails done. Sign and share this so people like me don’t have to ever deal with this again,” he continued, according to the petition. 

Wilkinson said Thursday that school officials told him he either must remain in in-school suspension or take classes online until he removes the nail polish.  

The Hill has reached out to the Clyde Consolidated Independent School District for comment.

The school district said in a Friday statement that it “conducts a diligent and thoughtful review” of its dress code policy annually, NBC News reported.

“That review process results in the development of a final dress code that is consistently implemented and enforced during the next school year. Parents and students are provided a copy of the dress code prior to the start of each new school year,” the district said. 

The Abilene, Texas Pride Alliance posted a letter directed to the school district on Facebook this week supporting Wilkinson, sharing that “It has come to our attention that your school district is maintaining and choosing to enforce a policy that in itself discriminates based on gender.” 

“We are hopeful that the intent of this action was not to be directly discriminatory. But unfortunately, the outcome is that this policy and its enforcement have discriminated against this child and possibly more before him,” the letter continued.

The organization called on the school district to lift the suspension and apologize to the student.

Tags Gender High school LGBTQ makeup nail polish Texas Trevor Wilkinson
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