News (USA)

Louisiana school backs off: Lesbian honors student allowed to wear tux to prom

Louisiana school backs off: Lesbian honors student allowed to wear tux to prom
Claudetteia Love
Claudetteia Love

MONROE, La. — A lesbian honors student in northeast Louisiana has been told she may wear a tuxedo to her prom, after all, a national advocacy group said Tuesday.

Claudetteia Love, 17, said last week that she and her friends would not go to the Carroll High School prom in Monroe because the principal said she had to wear a dress.

Principal Patrick Taylor and Monroe City School Board President Rodney McFarland, who had backed Love, told her on Tuesday that she may wear a tux to the prom April 24, the National Center for Lesbian Rights said in a news release.

Neither Taylor nor McFarland immediately returned calls for comment from The Associated Press.

Love said in the news release that she was inspired by an incredible outpouring of support since The News-Star published a story about her on its website.

“It is a source of strength that I will keep with me as I move on the next phase of my education and life beyond high school,” she said.

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The support included a local businessman’s offer to create a prom for Love and her friends and a letter sent Monday to all school superintendents in the state by the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana.

Last week, Taylor told The News-Star that the earlier decision was part of the school’s dress code and not anything personal.

Love and her family didn’t believe it.

McFarland also reports the U.S. Department of Justice contacted the school board’s attorney, according to a report by KNOE-TV. The DOJ advised the school board it is is illegal to prohibit a girl from wearing a tuxedo to prom, he said.

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