A senior at Clyde High School named Trevor Wilkinson was suspended indefinitely after he wore nail polish to school, breaking the school's dress code. It prohibits male students from wearing nail polish, but not female ones.
Needless to say, the school's regulation also doesn't account for students of diverse gender identities.
Refusing to take the double standard lying down, Wilkinson started a petition which was signed over 350,000 times as of Thursday evening. After the issue started to get national attention, he was even invited to speak on Good Morning America.
Once things began to hit a fever pitch, the school board decided to allow Wilkinson to come to a board meeting and speak his mind.
A video of the rousing call to action can be seen below.
"This isn't about me anymore. It's about a discriminatory, sexist policy that needs to be changed."
He went on to explain Clyde High School was putting his education at risk for something as incidental as whether or not his painted nails went against dress code.
"Why is it against dress code for a man to be comfortable with his masculinity and defy the gender norms society has imposed on us?"
"Why is it harmful for me to wear nail polish? If it's not harmful for girls to wear it, why is it harmful for males?"
And finally he ended the speech by pointing out the right of self expression.
"We're all supposed to be equal. Not having our freedom of expression suppressed, not having our voices not heard because grown-ups are taking three steps back instead of forward."
After the board meeting, the Superintendent made this statement:
"As set out in Board policy, Clyde CISD believes students should attend school in a safe and supportive environment that promotes equality for all, and the District takes all appropriate measures to ensure its actions align with that policy."
"While the District expects students to abide by established rules of conduct, the District is also always open to reconsidering policies or rules that do not reflect the District's intentions."
He offered this small win that will hopefully lead to a larger one.
"To that end, the District will conduct a thorough review of its dress code when it performs its annual review of the Student Handbook and, until that time, the District will assure that no student is treated in a discriminatory or inequitable manner."
"Under federal and state law, the District cannot publicly comment on or discuss specific student matters."
"However, be assured that the District appreciates the feedback and input that has been recently received from members of the community."
Many felt the school was being unnecessarily discriminatory.
@TheAdvocateMag This is angering... Lots of guys wear nail polish, and dress codes shouldn't have double standards for girls and boys.— Misty K Snow (@Misty K Snow)1608210174.0
@TheAdvocateMag People are DYING and this school is worried about nail polish? Leave this boy alone.— Val (@Val)1608210675.0
@TimothyChippARN I feel like I’m watching Footloose. So disappointing and infuriating that you have to fight for yo… https://t.co/lFGnJGbY61— Meghan Hales (@Meghan Hales)1608137985.0
Some were shocked the United States still hadn't moved beyond issues such as this.
@TimothyChippARN Weird that this is a thing in 2020.— Argh. (@Argh.)1608000697.0
@DmSllvn @TimothyChippARN agreed, at this point nail polish is the least of any issue left— michael rigsby (@michael rigsby)1608126074.0
And many showed their support by showing off their own polish.
Guys CAN wear nail polish. #texas #TrevorWilkinson #opi #mexicocitymovemint https://t.co/rkMsdnRm7a— Brian 🌁🏙 (@Brian 🌁🏙)1607566239.0
Let the boys wear what they want... #trevorWilkinson #clydeHighSchool https://t.co/cv92Thr5ut— JeffDaddy (@JeffDaddy)1608148368.0
This #Theatre #teacher supports #TrevorWilkinson #PickYourBattles https://t.co/mFcxsFHWyT— Keith Rollins (@Keith Rollins)1607398887.0
Painted my nails to support @trevvowilkinson 🌈 nail polish knows no gender #TrevorWilkinson https://t.co/kNoa5TmAwk— Justin Stewart (@Justin Stewart)1607335553.0
Let's hope the school board chooses to do the right thing when they review the student handbook.