ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla — Months of backlash have escalated into a national spotlight shining on the St. Johns County School District and what they will do next.
Last week, First Coast News reported more than 80 yearbook photos of female students at Bartram Trail High were altered to cover cleavage and shoulders, despite the fact these students say they were in compliance with the dress code.
For months, students and parents have been asking the district to make changes to the dress code policy which has been labeled sexist and discriminatory.
Now, change is coming.
Superintendent Tim Forson promises that revisions will be made. Senior Director of School Services Paul Abbatinozzi presented the recommended revisions. Those include the following:
"Fairness and consistency need to be a focus with our dress code," Abbatinozzi said.
Abbatinozzi recommends adding a statute to the policy to set the standard. He always wants to remove the word 'revealing' and define 'distracting' in character to mean clothing, piercing, and accessories that display profanities, violence, discriminatory messages, suggestive phrases or symbols of alcohol, drugs or tobacco.
He says midriff exposure is probably the biggest issue with school deans, but he did not mention revising the language on that policy.
Board member Kelly Barrera asked for Abbatinozzi to remove the language prohibiting excessive use of makeup.
Abbatinozzi says they have time to make more adjustments. June 8 is when the board is expected to vote on the revisions.
There is worldwide attention on the issue in St. Johns County. NBC News, TODAY Show, CNN and more news outlets have been reporting the story and famous comedians are even roasting the district for the yearbook censoring.