Spanish Fork student create ‘second chance homecoming’ after alleged ‘body shaming’ from school staff

Spanish fork American Leadership Academy students create “second chance homecoming” after allegedly being subjected to body shaming at their homecoming.

Photo by: Sydni Harrison

American Leadership Academy students came together to create a “second chance homecoming” after 14 students claimed they were “body shamed” and not allowed into their homecoming dance. 

While original reports stated that close to 60 girls were not allowed to enter the parent-sponsored dance, the school has come out and stated that only 14 students were refused entry due to the schools dress code policy. However, students are refuting this and state that there were more.

The students hosted a “Homecoming 2.0” which occurred on Oct. 8, reportedly had a number of businesses “step up” and donated funds, equipment and other items to the parent-led redo of the dance. One business was “Makeup by Katina” run by Katina Stephens who is an ALA alumnus. 

“So many of them were affected by 2020 and the quarantine, this is their last chance to attend a homecoming dance. I really wanted to do my part in helping to set this up for everybody and make some good memories,” Stephens stated.

Homecoming 2.0 occurred on Oct. 7, at the Emerald Eve Event Center in Salem, Ut. and the dress code for it? “If you love it, wear it,” said Stephens.

The dance occurred after the students held a protest on Sept. 26 the Monday after the initial incident, many girls held signs stating things such as “they were body shaming us.” The students wore dresses that supposedly went against the school dress code as part of the protest. 

It’s stated that they were protesting the way that faculty and staff had treated them at the homecoming dance. Some students claim the administration had crossed the line, body shaming some girls after first approving their dresses and then not allowing them entrance to the dance. 

In a video posted and shared by the students it showed that the crowned ALA Homecoming Queen was refused entry into the dance. Another video in the post had another student expressing that her dress was previously approved by staff and administration and then due to “her body being different from the models” she was denied entry. 

The school’s dress code states, “Because of differing body types, the same dress may be acceptable on one person, but not on another.” It also states that students’ dresses need to meet the above guidelines without adding any jacket or cover-up that may be removed once inside the dance. 

“I was mad that I got kicked out of the dance, but I felt sad and I felt bad for the other girls that had got kicked out,” said Isabella Irvine, a senior at the school. “They had their dresses pre-approved by the administration, but when they showed up, they were told that because their body was not the same as the picture of the model, they were not allowed to wear that dress.” 

The school has released statements saying that their school will be conducting training for the individuals working the dance as dress code monitors. It’s said that parents of the students have stated that the “communication needs to be kinder.”

“I just think the way they handled the situation was not okay, they could have handled it better,” said Jasmine Perez, a junior at American Leadership Academy, in an interview with KUTV.
Kaytlynn Elswood, student at ALA, went as far as to call out the school by posting the harassment policies to their Instagram and stating, “These are ALA handbook guidelines teachers must follow, not only did a teacher not follow it a member of the school board broke many of the things stated in the hand book the highlighted ones are some of the most important ones we need to know as students trying to change things. EVERYONE IS BEAUTIFUL NO MATTER WHAT [REMEMBER] THAT.”

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