The Herald-Courier reports that 12-year-old Adam Gottschalk violated his school dress code by wearing a purple “Relay For Life” shirt promoting cancer research.
When 13-year-old Michael Payne was spotted wearing the same T-shirt, he said he missed two classes after being told to sit in the hallway to “think about” what he’d done.
And when 12-year-old Matt Smith was seen with purple hair bands wrapped around his wrist – the same color as the relay shirts – the long-haired, seventh-grader said a teacher took them away from him.
The three Vance Middle seventh-graders are embroiled in a controversy that began Friday when they passed out T-shirts to classmates and teachers, dozens of whom donned the purple pullovers in what the students said was a show of support for “Relay For Life,” an annual nationwide fundraising effort by the American Cancer Society held each June.
Principal Rigby Kind and Vice Principal Scott Latham said the students put “Relay For Life” in a negative light when about 25 of them banded arms on their way to lunch and banged on lockers walking to and from the cafeteria, which disrupted other students in class.
As a result, school administrators have banned students from wearing the purple shirts.
Two of the boys’ parents said the issue isn’t whether they were banging on lockers, but why the faculty would blame the alleged behavior on shirts that promote a good cause.
The whole mess seems to be a he said/she said situation with a bit of bad judgment on both sides — none of which is related to Relay for Life.