A father protested a more lenient dress code proposal at a school board meeting in Gilbert, Arizona, by stripping down, but despite his demonstration, the board approved the new policy with a 3-2 vote.
In a memorable display of dissent, a father of four from Gilbert, Arizona, Ira Latham, bared it all at a school board meeting in response to a proposed more lenient dress code for his children’s school district.
“This Is Inappropriate for a Board Meeting”
Addressing the governing board members of the Higley Unified School District, Latham declared, “Under the proposed policy, this would be appropriate in a classroom,” as he removed his shirt and pants to reveal a significantly less modest outfit.
He humorously added, “If you ask me, this is inappropriate for a board meeting,” as reported by KPNX-TV.
He Wanted to Make a Bold Statement
Latham’s unconventional protest followed an earlier appearance at a board meeting, but he felt the need to make a more striking statement.
“The dress code that they wanted to get to is just basically a dress code for a public pool. Make sure that kids cover their underwear, and that’s about it,” he remarked in a subsequent interview with KPNX, dressed more conventionally this time.
“These Are My Babies”
He emphasized his concern for his children, stating, “These are my babies; these are my kids. I’m concerned about them. My concerns were about preparing students for entering the workforce, setting the right expectations, and having respect for other students in the classroom.”
The discussions around updating the student dress code policy began in May and had not been revised since 2001.
Many People Want a Relaxed Dress Code
Several board members advocated for a more relaxed dress code, including changes that would eliminate restrictions on tank tops, showing midriff, and other similar guidelines.
The proposed policy says that clothing must cover all private body parts and undergarments and should not be see-through.
It also permitted visible undergarment waistbands and straps under clothing but prohibited wearing undergarments as clothing.
“We Need to Allow Freedom”
Board member Amanda Wade voiced her support for the new, more lenient dress code, asserting, “These are kids. They’re not at a job, and I recognize at the end of the day, this is the most job that they have, but we need to allow freedom.”
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Ollyy