An Oklahoma school district superintendent angered some female students late this week when she publicly made examples of them for wearing what the superintendent called inappropriate attire.
The scene of the fashion furor was Noble High School in tiny Noble, Okla., just southeast of Norman, reports Oklahoma City NBC affiliate KFOR-TV.
“As I was greeting the children coming in I knew we had a major, major problem on our hands,” school district superintendent Ronda Bass told the station.
Bass decided to approach the issue by having a talk at the end of the school day on Thursday — the first day of school. The subject of the talk was the revealing garb worn by certain female students.
It’s not clear if this discussion included just some students or the entire student body. Whatever the case, there is a dispute about the dialogue that then transpired.
“The first question I asked was how many of you in here believe that there are female students on the campus today that are dressed completely inappropriate,” Bass told KFOR. “Most of their hands went up.”
Students recall more colorful language.
“The first sentence was, ‘Have y’all ever seen any ‘skanks’ around this school?’” senior Stephanie Stewart alleged. “Around the end she said, ‘I don’t want to see anyone’s ass hanging out of their shorts.”
When asked if she used those words, Bass told the NBC affiliate “she worried that students from other towns were calling our girls really negative names.”
“I want us to be known as the classy lady Bears,” Bass added. (Noble High School’s mascot is a bear.)
“I am very proud to be known as ‘Mama Bear Bass,’” the superintendent also said.
According to Stewart, Bass again appeared at Noble High on Friday morning to perform a dress code check personally. Stewart said the superintendent asked some girls to bend over.
“If you’re not comfortable with bending over, we might have a problem,” Bass told KFOR.
Stewart said she was among the students Bass singled out for her fashion choices.
Bass sent some girls home from school on Friday because of their clothes, Stewart said. Some of the girls cried as a result.
“A lot of girls actually felt humiliated,” the senior told the station.
Bass also sent an email to teachers asking for their help to bring about “a new norm of modesty” in the halls of Noble High.
The dress code for Noble High School in Oklahoma is now available online.
Fashion fracas over the clothes worn in America’s public schools pop up somewhat routinely. The best ones are actually about what teachers can wear. Last year, for example, the school district in Little Rock, Ark. announced a dress code that will require teachers to wear underwear. Every single day. (RELATED: Little Rock School District Will Now Make Teachers Wear Underwear)