No Tuck Protest

Tuesday, September 11th 2007, 10:56 am
By: News On 6

Students upset over how they wear their shirts boils over at a Tulsa high school on Tuesday. Will Rogers High School students say they did not like a measure that is intended to keep them safe. News On 6 Anchor Craig Day reports student protests are not out of the ordinary.

Some deal with important issues. In eastern Oklahoma in the past year, students protested the suspension and possible firing of a Muskogee County high school principal. Students in Catoosa walked out when their school system faced layoffs of teachers and personnel because of severe budget problems. However, the issue facing protesting students at Will Rogers High School concerned the tucking in of shirts.

"High school is way too diverse to tuck shirts in. I think we should be able to wear what we feel like wearing," says student Kevin Harrison.

A group of students skipped the first part of the school day to protest across from Will Rogers High. Even a few parents were there.

"For the rest of their life they're going to have to dress a certain way. As soon as they get out of school, they're going to have to dress in a uniform for work, so why can't they dress like they want now," says parent Stacey Price.

The tuck policy has been around at all Tulsa Public Schools since the beginning of school. After touring all of the district's schools, Superintendent Dr. Michael Zolkoski determined it needed to be enforced.

"We understand their feelings, we just have to look at the larger picture," said TIA spokesperson Tami Marler.

That larger picture is one of safety and security. Officials say tucking in shirts makes it more difficult for someone to hide something that does not belong on campus, like a weapon.

"A lot of our security measures have changed. A lot of things are more inconvenient for us personally as adults and as students as well and it's just something in a post 9-11 world that we're just going to have to deal with some things, some changes we don't like," says Tami Marler.

The demonstration ended peacefully at 12:45 p.m. Tuesday and the students return to class. That occurred after Will Rogers High School officials informed the students about the consequences they could face.

Officials tell the News On 6, those consequences included the possibility of five days of suspension for encouraging other students to violate school rules.

Click here to read Tulsa Public School's dress code policy.

Watch the video: Dress Code Protest