A 17-year-old high school senior was sent home after her female teacher told administrators that her outfit – a knee-length black dress with lace trim over a full-sleeved white turtleneck – made her uncomfortable.
Karis Wilson was abruptly pulled out of class on Tuesday at NorKam Senior Secondary school in Kamloops, British Columbia and escorted to the principal’s office, according to her father, Christopher Wilson.
Wilson posted a video about the incident on Facebook, where it went viral. As of Friday, the video has been viewed more than 77,000 times. It has generated more than 1,300 reactions and nearly 740 comments.
When reached by DailyMail.com, a spokesperson for the school district declined to identify the teacher or to make her available for interviews, citing Canadian privacy laws.
Karis Wilson, 17, of Kamloops, British Columbia was sent home by her high school on Tuesday after the outfit she wore (above) – a knee-length black dress with lace trim over a full-sleeved white turtleneck – made her female teacher uncomfortable, according to the girl’s father
Karis’ father, Christopher Wilson, posted a video on Facebook about the incident. He also posted the photo of his daughter in the outfit
Christopher said his daughter came home ‘in tears’ after she was pulled out of class
The spokesperson said that a teachers’ professional association within the BC Ministry of Education will conduct an ‘internal review’ of the matter, though she declined to say when the review will be done.
The spokesperson referred DailyMail.com to a statement from Dr. Terry Sullivan, the superintendent of schools, which read: ‘School District No. 73 (Kamloops-Thompson) is aware of the incident regarding a grade 12 student and dress code at NorKam Secondary on Feb. 23, 2021.
‘We understand the parent is concerned about what happened to his daughter at school yesterday.
‘We are also concerned about these allegations and are treating them seriously. The incident is currently under review. We will not comment on the incident specifically.
‘Whenever a parent is concerned about their child at school we want to work with them for the best outcome for the student.’
The incident generated widespread outrage on social media after Karis’ father shared a photo and posted a video on Tuesday.
Christopher Wilson’s post about his daughter went viral and sparked outrage online as the hashtag #imwithkaris started trending. Girls and women posted photos of themselves wearing similar outfits
‘Today my daughter was sent home for wearing clothing that made her female teacher and her male Student teacher “feel uncomfortable”,’ Christopher wrote on his Facebook page.
‘Centered out in front of her class and told she needs to leave class and brought her to the VP’s before she went home in tears.
‘After asking her how she would like me to handle it she said she wanted to make sure this kind of thing doesn’t happen to the students that come after her.
‘Please stand with Karis and I and make sure that those involved are held accountable and that this never happens again.’
Christopher than ended the post with the hashtag #imwithkaris, which also went viral. He then posted a photo of his daughter wearing the outfit that resulted in her being removed from class.
‘I’m frustrated, I’m hurt, I’m disappointed in the system,’ Christopher says in the video.
‘I’m pretty upset at this happening in 2021.’
Christopher says he is used to seeing similar stories online about incidents like this in places within the United States, but he thought ‘it will never happen to us, it will never hit home.’
He says that he confronted the principal and vice principal about the matter. When he showed the vice principal a photo of his daughter’s outfit, Christopher says that the vice principal ‘quietly’ conceded that it did not make her uncomfortable.
Christopher says that he then asked to see the official dress code, which prohibits students from wearing anything promoting alcohol or tobacco use; wearing anything that depicts nudity; wearing clothing with offensive language; and wearing clothing that is ‘distracting.’
On Wednesday, Karis’ classmates at NorKam Senior Secondary school staged a walkout in solidarity
Some of them held signs that read: ‘I am not my dress’; ‘My education is more important than what I wear’; and ‘Am I distracting you with my “midrift”?’
‘If you’re a teacher and you’re distracted by clothing your students are wearing, then you are in the wrong profession,’ Christopher says.
‘Maybe you should try something new.’
After Christopher’s post went viral, several other women and girls posted images of themselves on social media wearing similar outfits.
‘If a teacher is struggling with inappropriate thoughts towards a student, the authority figure ( the teacher) should be asked to leave, not the student!’ wrote Facebook user Rae-ann Grant.
Another Facebook user, Dannielle Port, wrote: ‘A female’s education is far more important than how she is dressed! If somebody else’s choice of clothing makes you uncomfortable then that is entirely on you!’
Facebook user Bethanie Frank wrote: ‘So, the female teacher perpetuated rape culture, shamed a young woman? And committed an act of lateral violence against this child.’
Karis’ classmates at NorKam staged a walkout on Wednesday in solidarity.
Some of them held signs that read: ‘I am not my dress’; ‘My education is more important than what I wear’; and ‘Am I distracting you with my “midrift”?’.
Kamloops is a small town located about 250 miles northeast of Vancouver.
School District 73 Kamloops/Thompson encompasses 45 schools serving 15,000 students. The schools are manned by 2,000 staffers.