White Station High School in Tennessee chose its first gender neutral homecoming crown.
Brandon Allen, a senior at White Station, accepted the award last Friday while wearing a gold dress and tiara, according to NBC News.
“Here’s the thing: it’s Brandon’s right to run for homecoming court under Title IX,” Carrye Holland, the principal at White Station, wrote in the comments of the Facebook post the school shared. “It’s the students’ choice of who they want to support as homecoming royalty.”
We crowned our 2019 Homecoming Royalty tonight. Congrats to senior Brandon Allen! pic.twitter.com/TslNnCqRdc
— White Station High (@SpartansWSHS) September 28, 2019
“I want to rock a dress and look like a queen,” Allen told Huff Post.
The Superintendent of Shelby County Schools weighed in on the matter on Twitter saying that the “District is committed to ensuring a positive and respectful school environment where everyone is treated with dignity. Homecoming queen and king is a tradition.” (RELATED:High School Girls Angry After Boy Is Crowned Prom Queen)
Regarding @SpartansWSHS Homecoming: Shelby County Schools policy prohibits discrimination, and the District is committed to ensuring a positive and respectful school environment where everyone is treated with dignity. Homecoming queen and king is a tradition…
— Dr. Joris M. Ray (@SCSSuptRay) September 29, 2019
Homecoming celebrations and honors have caused contention before, mostly over the allegedly outdated features of the tradition.
A high school in D.C. got rid of the king and queen titles and instead used “homecoming court.” Penn State University left behind the titles and instead voted for two gender-neutral award winners. And a Dartmouth student leader wanted to end homecoming all together because of the “legacy to colonialism.”
i am forever proud of my high school pic.twitter.com/mWf7fIfUi2
— emmett (@emmettkcampbell) September 28, 2019
“Don’t you dare ever change yourself for anyone else but you!” Allen told the Huff Post. “You are beautiful, you are unique, and you’re special. Don’t ever second guess your existence or feelings for a second.”