Oklahoma high school student Rose Lynn is fighting back after she says she was sent home from school for wearing leggings that “may distract young boys.”
Lynn, 17, tells PEOPLE that her English teacher and the school principal allegedly said her outfit was “inappropriate” because she was wearing her leggings with a shirt that didn’t cover her crotch.
While Lynn, who lives in Lawton, Oklahoma, says she was understanding at first, she got annoyed when the teacher and principal said they were concerned about how boys would react to her outfit.
“I was respectful initially. It wasn’t until they proceeded to say I had to change because of boys that I got upset,” she says.
To protest the decision, Lynn returned to school wearing a long, homemade t-shirt over her leggings, with “‘It Doesn’t Cover your CROTCH’ ” and “‘You’ll distract the boys’ ” written with a Sharpie.
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“I formed it into kind of silent protest,” she says. “I did it in such a way that I wasn’t causing a disruptive scene or would get in trouble, but would still be able to get my point across.”
But the administration didn’t approve of this shirt either, and Lynn was pulled out of class and sent home for the rest of the day (although allegedly it was because she didn’t have her student ID, which Lynn said was back at her desk).
Lynn detailed the incident on Facebook Dec. 11, in a post that now has almost 18,000 likes.
She says that she’s particularly disappointed with her school’s reaction because of what it tells other female students about their appearance.
“So once again, Society has failed to advocate young ladies, by confining them in a box, where they are stripped from their sense of self respect and self expression, rather than teaching young men to respect the boundaries of young ladies,” Lynn wrote in the post.
Now Lynn’s hope is that her reaction shows other girls that they, too, can take a stand.
“My only goal is that young girls realize that it’s okay to speak your mind in a constructive manner,” she says to PEOPLE. “Just because some people may not agree with your stance does not mean that you are wrong or that change shouldn’t happen.”
“I hope young girls realize that they are far more than just sexual objects. Their education should be valued and not halted because of some administration’s views on how young men will react to their attire.”