A group of female students at a Utah high school accused officials of secretly — and inconsistently — altering their yearbook photos, KSTU-TV reported on Wednesday.
“I feel like they put names in a hat and pick and choose who,” Wasatch High School sophomore Rachel Russel told KSTU. “There were plenty of girls that were wearing thicker tank tops and half of them got edited and half of them didn’t.”
Russel’s original picture showed her wearing a sleeveless top. But the version published in the yearbook had black sleeves added on.
“My shirt was a cream color, and the color of the cover-up was completely white,” sophomore Kimberly Montoya (pictured above) said of the sleeves added to her picture. “It looked like white-out on my skin.”
Wasatch County School District superintendent Terry E. Shoemaker told KSTU that the photos were edited to reflect the district dress code, and that a sign was posted at the location of the yearbook photo shoot to remind students of the rules.
The district dress code’s (PDF) ban on “extreme clothing” lists “revealing shorts, skirts, dresses, tank shirts, halter or crop tops, spaghetti straps, etc.”
“We only apologize in the sense that we want to be more consistent with what we`re trying to do,” Shoemaker was quoted as saying. “In that sense we can help kids better prepare for their future by knowing how to dress appropriately for things.”
Shoemaker did concede that the edits were done inconsistently, and that Wasatch High administrators worked with yearbook staff on making the alterations. There have been no reports of male students having their photos altered.
Watch KSTU’s report, as aired on Wednesday, below.