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Transgender teen sent home from school dance in floods of tears for wearing girls’ clothes

Emma Powys Maurice March 4, 2020

Charissa Mehojah, the mother of the transgender teen (Screenshot/WJCL)

A mother is furious after a school counsellor pulled her 13-year-old transgender daughter out of a dance, accusing her of wearing a “costume” of girls’ clothes.

Charissa Mehojah’s daughter went to a Valentine’s Day dance at Rice Creek School in Port Wentworth wearing a black blouse, eye shadow, black slacks, and a rose in her hair.

These clothes were in accordance with the school dress code, but Mehojah later learned her daughter was pulled out of the dance and isolated in the school library.

“I was furious. I was livid,” Mehojah told WJCL News. “All she was wearing was an outfit that I or you would wear to go out to eat with a loved one.

“She was crying and upset because this was the first time she was able to express who she is inside, in a public setting. Honestly, she was going to go in a dress, but she chose not to just in case it was going to be a problem.”

When Mehojah met with the school counsellor, she was told that her daughter had been removed from the dance because she was wearing “a costume”.

“Instead of apologising and correcting the behaviour, [the principal] asked for medical proof that my daughter is transgender,” she said. The principal now denies asking for this.

After the incident, the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System released a statement: “SCCPSS supports and respects the rights of all students and does not discriminate based on the individual’s race, colour, religion, or sexual orientation.

“We encourage students to build communities of inclusion and acceptance at their respective schools in accordance with district policy.”

It added that students are required to follow “dress code requirements at school and during school sponsored activities” in order to preserve “an orderly environment.”

But the statement confirmed that the school’s dress code does not ban students of any gender identity from wearing what Mehojah’s daughter wore to the dance.

The principal has reportedly apologised to the girl in person, but Mehojah says no one has contacted her.

 

 

More: school dance, transgender teens

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