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Monday, November 24, 2014

5-year-old boy forced to turn his Michigan shirt inside-out at Oklahoma school

The Wilson Elementary School in Oklahoma City has a very strict dress code. Oftentimes that is a good thing for youngsters, but there are other times when a school’s dress code can leave you scratching your head. According to News 9 in Oklahoma, a 5-year-old boy named Cooper Barton was forced to turn his University of Michigan shirt inside-out when he arrived at Wilson Elementary last week.

Believe it or not, the Oklahoma City Public Schools dress code actually states that students are only allowed to wear Oklahoma college apparel to school. Clothing from any school outside of Oklahoma is prohibited, and Cooper’s mother Shannon Barton says her son was informed of that when he wore the Michigan shirt to kindergarten.

“They should really worry about academics,” she said. “It wasn’t offensive. He’s five.”

Did we mention the boy is five years old? Barton said her son was forced to go behind a tree on the playground to turn the shirt inside-out. Professional team apparel such as Oklahoma City Thunder gear is also prohibited by the OKCPS Dress Policy. The district says the dress code was created in 2005 to help rid schools of gang symbols and apparel.

Oklahoma City School Superintendant Karl Springer released a statement saying that the administration will look into the policy to see if it needs any changes.

Like this elementary school that threatened to isolate students if they didn’t wear purple to class, this seems completely over the top. It’s one thing to not allow young children to express themselves if they do so in an inappropriate manner, but now a 5-year-old can’t be proud of his favorite team unless that favorite team plays in his state? Talk about failing to pick your battles.

Thanks to Dr. Saturday for the story

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