March 31, 2017 2:30 pm
Updated: March 31, 2017 2:33 pm

Florida high school sorry for saying only ‘good girls’ in modest dresses can attend prom

WATCH: Students, parents and experts said the wording on the posters was problematic.

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A principal in Florida has apologized after a staff member put up posters around the school showing girls what kinds of dresses would and wouldn’t be allowed at the prom.

The posters at Stanton College Preparatory School in Jacksonville featured pictures of a type of dress that would be allowed with the caption “Going to Stanton Prom? Yes you are. Good girl.” Photos with dresses that wouldn’t be allowed had the caption “Going to Stanton Prom? No you’re not.”

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Stanton senior Lily Willingham tweeted about the posters, commenting that they were distributed around the school just a week before prom.

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“They didn’t quite see the issue about it being demeaning to women,” Willingham told NBC-affiliate WTLV. “Once they did realize that that offended us and that we weren’t OK with that, they were like, ‘Oh wow, we didn’t see it that way,’ and they apologized.”

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The Florida Times-Union reports that after the posters drew criticism, Stanton principal Nongongoma Majova-Seane sent a message to parents and students apologizing and saying students wouldn’t be banned from prom because of their clothing.

Clinical psychologist Sarah Dew-Reeves said the poster’s language was problematic.

“By saying ‘good girl’ well that’s in general how we would talk to a dog,” she said. “It would be suggesting at least that how they [girls] look has everything to do with their goodness.”

Cameal Phillips-St. Clair, whose daughter is a sophomore at the school, told CBS-affiliate WJAX that she was upset that officials thought they could tell students what they could wear.

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“I would have been totally pissed off as a parent if you tell me what my child can’t wear,” she said. “As a parent I set the rules in my household. I set the tone.”

Anthony Paul, a senior at the high school, said the overall dress code puts the blame on women and girls and needs to be changed.

“There’s a problem with this dress code that’s been outdated, stigmatizes the female body and you [the school] need to do something about it and fix it,” he said.

Duval County school district spokesman Mark Sherwood says the unidentified person who put up the posters has been counselled.

— With files from The Associated Press

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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