A second grade student at Meridian Ranch Elementary School was told to remove makeup he wore to turn his face black as he dressed up for a project in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The project was a part of the second grade’s living wax museum.
Sean King was assigned to portray Dr. King by his teacher.
"All I heard was, 'Wow, your costume is awesome,'" Sean said.
His parents Michelle and Anthony went to see Sean's presentation about Martin Luther King, and were told there was a problem.
The principal said the face paint had to go.
"They wanted me to clean up immediately or leave," said Sean.
Michelle said she had to talk to the principal and two other District 49 staff when an employee at the school took offense to a costume that didn't give her a second thought.
"It's embarrassing," she said. "It's sad for the kids and sad for Sean because he's a very good student. He really thinks of school very highly.
Michelle said the three D-49 staff couldn't say if Sean would be punished if he didn't take off his makeup. She later took Sean home from school.
"I think they took it farther than what it had to be," Michelle said.
A District 49 spokesperson says the complaint led the principal to determine the costume was a disruption.
"When something becomes offensive or distracting, that's when it falls under the board policy of dress code, and making sure if something is distracting that it's removed from the learning environment," said Stephanie Wurtz-Meredith Wednesday afternoon.
Michelle said Sean planned to wash the paint off as soon as he was done with his presentation. She doesn’t know if his grade will be affected.
Michelle said Wednesday there's about a week left of school, and Sean will be there to finish the school year.
KKTV firmly believes in freedom of speech for all and we are happy to provide this forum for the community to share opinions and facts. We ask that commenters keep it clean, keep it truthful, stay on topic and be responsible. Comments left here do not necessarily represent the viewpoint of KKTV 11 News.
If you believe that any of the comments on our site are inappropriate or offensive, please tell us by clicking “Report Abuse” and answering the questions that follow. We will review any reported comments promptly.powered by Disqus
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or email@example.com.