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The Bartram Trail High School yearbook coordinator purposefully altered 80 yearbook photos to conceal young girls' chests, the school district confirmed on Friday.
Rumors swirled around yearbook alterations, according to a student, but they had no idea to what extent. Over 80 students, all girls, had grabbed their copy of the $100 high school yearbook only to realize that choppy edits had been done to conceal their chests and even their shoulders. Some girls had even received literal black bars across their chests. The students slowly became outraged and said the alterations made them feel sexualized.
The edits were done by Anne Irwin, an employee of Bartram Trail High School, who claims to have made her decisions based on the school's “dress code.” “I am sure there are many different opinions on whether they were or were not [in violation of the school’s dress code],” a district spokesperson told a local news outlet News4Jax. “The dress code guidelines are in our student code of conduct, but enforcement of the dress code happens at the school level and differs from administration to administration.”
Irwin’s supposed reasoning behind the edits were that she wanted the girls to appear more modest. However, News4Jax reviewed the yearbook and saw photos of shirtless male students and other photos that revealed some girls’ shoulders. Additionally, it appeared only the girls’ portrait photos had been altered. “It made me feel a little uncomfortable that that’s what they noticed when they looked at our pictures,” a student said.
This isn’t the first time the Bartram Trail High School has made headlines for its obscure code of conduct. Back in March, it was reported that teen girls were being pulled out of class and sent to the Dean’s office for “violating” the school's dress code. They were asked to either change clothes or face suspension. The story caused national outrage and sparked an online petition that gathered over 3,000 signatures.