On October 27, Carey Burgess showed up at her school in coastal Beaufort, South Carolina just like always. Ready to learn, and ready to mingle with friends between classes and during lunch. Shortly after showing up that morning, she got shown out, though, and because one teacher thought Burgess was showing too much.
Yes, Burgess was suspended from Beaufort High that morning for wearing an above-the-knee skirt. Not a micro, not a mini; not a circle skirt nor a revealing wrap. Just one that the teacher somehow eye-measured to be more than three inches above Burgess’ knees, which would be a violation of the school’s dress code.
But just how short was that skirt? Here – see for yourself in the picture Burgess posted online later that morning:
Today, I wore this outfit to Beaufort High School. About 20 minutes into the day, my friend and I were excused from class to venture to the vending machine because our teacher was planning to do nothing all class period, as usual. On our way back, I learned something very important about myself: I am a whore.
That was the reception Burgess received from the teacher who stopped her in the hallway, or at least her own reception of that reception, which still matters most. She was converted from student body president and recent college scholarship recipient to “whore.” And the method in which her dress was pointed out was what got to Burgess most.
Thank you for bringing me to tears in front of my friends and classmates because you do not have the decency to pull me aside and explain the problem.
What might be the most insulting point of this incident was that Burgess chose her outfit that day specifically for participation in a “Teacher Cadet” program, she said. In other words, she wore that (non-revealing) skirt in order to dress and look like a teacher. For a teacher to then criticize her – no, chastise her – for what’s actually a very professional and fitting appearance won’t exactly help Burgess’ interest in that same field.
The young lady and active student apparently took it in stride, though, and responded with sarcastic truth about existing sexism in her school.
You saved me, Beaufort High. […] I was heading down the path of hard drugs (good thing you’re testing next year!), strip clubs, and sugar daddies. I don’t where I would be without your misogynistic views. How could I go on without a certain math teacher making sexist jokes all class? How could I survive without my science professor letting me know I am an inferior woman?
And Burgess closed her well-composed comment with a punch:
I am bigger than Beaufort High School. All of us are. Maybe instead of worrying about my skirt, Beaufort High should take notice of its incompetent employees, and sexist leaders.
In 24 hours since her social media posting of the incident, Burgess received dozens of supporting comments and over 1,500 shares.
The school principal did not reply to local media’s request for comment.
Featured image acquired from Facebook