In Texas, a teen is calling out his high school for a double standard. On social media Trevor Wilkinson, a 17-year-old at Clyde High School, is ringing the alarm over being punished for wearing nail polish.
“I got ISS (in school suspension) for having my nails painted,” he wrote in a “Allow males to wear nail polish”-titled Change.org petition he published a week ago. “I was told that I will continue to get ISS until I take them off. It’s a complete double standard because girls are allowed to paint and get their nails done.”
Wilkinson updated the petition, which has received over 62,000 digital signatures, on December 3 noting that he was still in ISS.
“I have been doing this to express who I am,” Wilkinson told USA Today. “I’ve been trapped in closed-minded people’s minds … I love my nails. I think they’re so cool. I’m definitely using it to express myself and feel everyone should have freedom of expression.
While the district refused to elaborate on the case specifically, District Superintendent Kenny Berry released a statement.
“The district conducts a diligent and thoughtful review of the dress code on an annual basis,” they wrote. “That review process results in the development of a final dress code that is consistently implemented and enforced during the next school year. Questions or concerns with the dress code are reviewed individually, and the district cannot share any information regarding specific student. The district appreciates the feedback and input on this issue received from members of the community, and will take this into consideration when it conducts its annual review later this school year.”
According to current guidelines, Wilkinson will remain in ISS until he removes his polish, or he can take classes online. Wilkinson has received a lot of support online.
The story began to go viral after Wilkinson uploaded a photo to snapchat, in tears writing about what had happened. Screnshots of the post began to spread through Facebook and then through Twitter with the District contact information. Some others began to paint their nails in support. But he's also gotten support at home. In a new interview with Good Morning America, Wilkinson's guardian, his great-grandfather, speaks out on the issue.
"I don't understand why it's any kind of a big deal," he says. "Who does it harm? I'd like to see them just drop it — that's what they should do."
The District's Twitter account has been locked as tweets have poured in from social media.