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Male Suspended for Nail Polish Gets 'What I Wanted All Along'

Texas high school adopts gender-neutral dress code, to Trevor Wilkinson's glee
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 23, 2021 12:02 PM CDT

(Newser) – Texas high school senior Trevor Wilkinson made headlines in December after he was suspended for wearing nail polish. Now the gay teen is making headlines again, this time for a personal win. Wilkinson, who served an in-school suspension after he was caught wearing nail polish at Clyde High School, has been urging the Clyde Consolidated Independent School District to update its "discriminatory" dress-code policy. It had different rules for males, who weren't allowed to paint their nails, and females, who were. "Why is it against dress code for a man to be comfortable with his masculinity and defy the gender norms that society has imposed on us," the 17-year-old asked the school board in December, per NBC News, noting the ACLU of Texas had previously flagged the policy as unjust. Since then, his Change.org petition has received more than 400,000 signatures.

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His win came Monday as the school board unanimously approved a new dress code for the 2021-22 school year. Gone is the rule barring males from wearing nail polish or makeup. In fact, all references to males and females are eliminated. The new "Dress and Grooming Policy" is gender-neutral, referring only to "students," per KRBC. For instance, it notes "students are not allowed to have facial hair" and "students may not wear strapless, spaghetti straps, tank or cut tops, half, or mesh shirts." "I'm so happy. This is what I wanted all along, and this is what I was fighting for," Wilkinson tells KTXS. He tells KRBC that people have been coming up to him at school to show him their painted nails. "I think that I will always look back on this experience and know that what I did was right," he says. (Read more Texas stories.)

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