ASHEBORO, NC (AP) – A high school student in North Carolina was denied his degree because he draped a Mexican flag over his gown in violation of a graduation dress code, officials said ‘school.
68-second video from Asheboro High School graduation on Thursday shows the student wearing the flag on her gown, back and shoulders, as he walks towards the stage, WGHP reported. The video shows the student being awarded a diploma and heading towards graduation. He then shows him appearing to talk to people in the line for a few seconds before returning to his seat without his degree.
My people on Twitter are making this go viral. Principle “Mrs. Penny Crooks” refused my cousin her diploma for “disrupting” the graduation ceremony. pic.twitter.com/7HfKzNGdJ3
– Adolfo Hurtado (@dolfoohurtado) June 4, 2021
Asheboro School officials defended the decision to withhold the student’s diploma, saying wearing a flag of any kind is a dress code violation.
“The crux of the matter is the fact that the student did not follow the dress code established for the event and undermined the importance and solemnity of the ceremony,” officials said in one of the two statements. “Our dress code is in place to ensure the dignity of the event and is fair to all students.”
In a separate statement, officials said they “continue to work to resolve this issue with the student and his family so that he graduates from Asheboro High School.”
“He worked very hard and we congratulate him on this great achievement,” the statement said.
The video also captures another student carrying the Mexican flag on her mortar. The statement said the mortar decoration is “the ONLY acceptable deviation from the standard cap and robe badges.”
“Unfortunately, we will now reassess this decision for future upper classes in light of the situation,” the statement said.