Eighth-grader, Samantha Wilson, didn’t know why her favorite top was a cause for concern at Irvington Middle School, but she was called into the assistant principal’s office due to her “inappropriate” crop top, reports the New York Post.

The 13-year-old said she felt shamed for her off-the-shoulder sweater from H&M that she had proudly worn to reflect her personal style.

Cydney Wilson / Change.org

According to the student, during her third-period science class, she was called to the office for dressing in a top that showed off her midriff and bra straps, and her high-waisted leggings were also reported to the administration. Samantha said:

“I was told it was a distraction to the boys, and that my midriff and bra strap were visible.”

The student admitted that her midriff was visible when she raised her arms but otherwise thought her shirt was just like “every other sweater.”

According to the Irvington Middle School handbook, students are not allowed to wear clothes that distract others from learning and “extremely brief garments are not permitted … including garments in which any midriff skin is easily exposed.”

Samantha got upset and cried about the violation, then texted her mother during school saying she had the “worst day ever,” reports Yahoo.

Her assistant principal made her wear a coat over her sweater for the rest of the school day. Samatha told the Post:

“I walked into my next class trying not to cry. But I lost it and I burst into tears.”

She explained:

“It felt like a personal hit on me and my clothing style.”

The student recalled the incident to her fourth-period academic lab teacher and the instructor allegedly said “‘she deserves to be'” called out for her outfit in front of her entire class.

Samantha’s mother, Jamie Wilson, and family believe the young girl didn’t do anything provocative and started a petition asking Irvington Middle School to re-evaluate its rules to create a dress code that reflects the community’s values.

Jamie wrote on the petition:

I still can’t believe that my daughter/Cyd’s sister was body-shamed today — by adults at her school. She was wearing black leggings and a sweater that at times slipped off her shoulder showing g-d forbid her bra strap and because her belly button was showing when she raised her hand.

She is an innocent 13-year-old girl who wore an outfit she felt good about. She felt good in it.

She continued:

She was humiliated at school — pulled from science to discuss. She just liked the shirt and doesn’t think about what happens when she raises her hand.

Samantha’s mom said she was “so disappointed” in her daughter’s school for “objectifying young girls.” However, people responding to the dress-code backlash slammed the girl’s parents on social media. One commenter wrote:

NOT just the girls fault but it’s the parents FAULT!!

Another said:

So, let me get this straight—she is now trying to CHANGE the dress code? So, she’s aware there’s a dress code, huh? So, perhaps the answer to ‘Why are they doing this to me?’ could, maybe, perhaps, be found IN that dress code she seems vaguely aware exists?

Irvington Schools Superintendent Kristopher Harrison told Yahoo in a statement that the school is addressing the dress code conflict.

What do you think about the 13-year-old getting in trouble with her school for a dress code violation? Let us know your thoughts.

About the author

Tiffani is a writer for Dearly. She is from New York City. Prior to working for Dearly she covered fashion news and managed social media for various digital media outlets.

Leave a comment

36 Replies to “People Blame Teen Girl’s Mom After Her Cropped Sweater Violates the Dress Code at Her School”

  • Ginger 2 years ago

    I personally don’t think it’s provocative! The bra straps were the same colors in her sweater so I do not see anything wrong with that! Her midriff only showed when she raised her hand so have her say I have the answer & problem solved! What the teacher said to her was inappropriate & he or she should be reprimanded for his or her stupidity! It wasn’t cut that high! I do believe in dress codes but it wasn’t that offensive!

  • Magen 2 years ago

    Whether it was offensive or provocative is not the issue. The fact that it didn’t fall within guidelines is the issue. It didn’t. She got a dress code violation because she did not adhere to the guidelines written in the school handbook. Mom is at fault and the girl is at fault. Neither one took the rules seriously and now are mad that they have to adhere to rules they already knew about. I don’t feel sorry for them at all! They are using it his to push an agenda!

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      #1 The guidelines are wrong
      #2 She was told she couldn’t wear the outfit so she didn’t distract boys. Boys distraction are their problem, not hers. It the guildlines are based on a girl being responsible for men’s thoughts and feelings, see #1.

      • J 2 years ago

        I’m not a boy and I’d be distracted by her bra straps and midriff showing and not in a sexual way! The rules are literally in black and white adhere by them. The rest of us would like to go to school and/or work and Not have to see children showing off their bodies. Bc that’s what a 13 year old is- A CHILD.

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      Wow! How judgmental and self righteous you are! Just wait until your precious angel gets called out for something, and they will. I bet you wouldn’t spew your words then!

      • Brenda 2 years ago

        It’s ridiculous that people constantly assume they should be above every rule. Guess what?! In life there are rules… you teach your kids to follow simple rules so that eventually they will be able to work in environment with other people without causing problems everywhere they go.

  • Aliyah 2 years ago

    What about the fact it was a distraction to the boys????

    Who cares,why is she slammed because boys are looking,it’s not revealing,it’s not bad…I know there is access code and she needs to follow it like everyone else,but I don’t like it was a distraction to the boys

  • Jennifer Smith 2 years ago

    Sorry, the dress code exists for a reason, and this sweater violates it. The falling off the shoulder makes it look like the sweater is too big for her, and she has to wear high-waisted leggings to keep it from showing the midriff all the time (although, how high-waisted could they be, if raising her hand makes her belly button visible?) The sweater violates the dress code, plus it looks sloppy as well. Off the shoulder, even partially, is not a style allowed on most dress codes, and not just at school.

  • Lucian 2 years ago

    Nobody at school wants to see her sloppy bra straps nor her belly button!
    She violated the dress code for inappropriate clothing period. Just change your top and move on.
    She looks sloppy and uncomfortable to boot.
    The rules are there for everyone to follow and to protect everyone.
    Show your bra and belly on the weekend on your own time – not at school or work.

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      Omg…you judgemental nancies are hilarious!

    • Ljz 2 years ago

      One this is a kid. If she feels good about the outfit that is her right to be. No one has the right to make her feel bad about what she likes. Dont be judging because yours ass is probably in sweats and a busted old bra.

      • J 2 years ago

        She can feel good about wearing it on the weekend. She’s 13. Her mother should know better.

      • Anonymous 2 years ago

        13 isn’t a “kid” anymore. You have to wonder why girls feel “comfortable” drawing attention to themselves breaking rules. The old “shame the boys” card doesn’t cut it for me. Remember being 13, anyone? Could you suddenly be an adult? I’m for uniforms in all schools. Jeans and t-shirts fit all because adults can’t seem to keep themselves from okaying girls objectifying themselves and then blaming someone for noticing. Adult women do it all the time and it works for them.

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    Its not about violating the dress code its about the comments from faculty “distracting the boys” and being called out in front of the class.

    • J 2 years ago

      Unfortunately I don’t think anyone should believe her that the school said that to her. Schools have to be very careful in what they say and how they word things these days and the whole “it’ll distract boys” is so over done and an easy way to push her own agenda.

      • Kimberly Beasley 2 years ago

        Well, I believe her! A lot of adults don’t know how to handle these kinds of situations appropriately and I believe that was the case here. I personally don’t think the outfit is breaking the dress code. But, since the school thought so, the way they handled it was totally inappropriate.

      • Anonymous 2 years ago


  • Denessa 2 years ago

    The dress codes are there for a purpose. I don’t always want to follow them, but my daughter & I know the rules, no skin showing at the tummy area, & no shoulders showing. The t-shirts have to be three fingers across on the shoulders or against the rules. And at our Junior High you cannot wear leggings without something covering your butt.

  • MariaRose 2 years ago

    This just goes back to an age-old problem with school dress code rules. If changes are needed in those codes, then those should be addressed and changed. As for how the school administrators responded, especially in this day of being PC, their comments should have been better formulated.
    As for the parents’ role here, the dress code is given to all students and the parents and the children should know the rules concerning dress codes. It doesn’t include wearing anything as there is a specific list of acceptable items, which never include those short-tops, no matter how much desired by the wearer. I had the same argument with my daughter in 1990s concerning tops exactly like this. She also had to deal with what happened when she snuck out wearing those tops to school. Some children like to push the buttons on rules and get mad about the consequences. Today social media makes the complainer look like a victim, getting disciplined for not following the dress code, by making it a sexism response, beyond the reasons for the dress codes.
    If dress codes rules need to be changed then, by all means, change them but don’t bring in another issue to hide the fact that you broke the dress code rules by wearing something not allowed just to make a point. Two wrongs do not make a right.

  • Jenn 2 years ago

    There’s a dress code for a reason. Just follow it. She felt humiliated seriously shut the hell up. I have an 8th header there are so many worse things going on then being called down for dress code. Evidently it happens daily but the girls at our school don’t walk into class bursting into tears because they decided not to follow the rules and got caught. Mom is dumb and shouldn’t be trying to get her daughter off the hook for not following the rules

  • Laura 2 years ago

    It’s not provocative at all, and is really cute…BUT we ALL had to obey school dress codes , as silly as they are, and as strict as they are , need to be followed. IF it says no midriff and no bra straps, no midriff and bra straps …we couldn’t wear tank tops to school bc of it, silly yes, but you still need to follow the code if you don’t want to be called out.

  • Edna 2 years ago

    #1 I will say the dress code is there for a reason and if you know its there adhere to it.
    #2 the dress code is archiac and vagie and sexist at best. There does need to be changes because a girl should nt have to be ashamed of her body. She should celevrate it in any shape and your little boy cant keep his hands and eye balls to himself that is an issue that needs to be dealth with at home. Because if you look at most rules for boys its quite literally almost just dont come to school naked! Yet there is like a 3-5 page you need a lawyer vague rulebook on what girls need to wear and that is just dumb.

  • Sheila P 2 years ago

    There is a dress code. Adhere to it or suffer the consequences. Turning a person who violates a rule into a victim because the punishment wasn’t applied in a perfect, non-offensive way is so typical of today’s youth. And shame on her mother for not standing behind the authority figure in her daughter’s life – the school admin in this situation. It sets a horrible example for your child when you criticize people in position’s of authority in plain view. If, as a parent, you don’t agree with an action taken, you address them privately and unbeknownst to your child. So that there is no confusion in their mind regarding respect for the rules & enforcers of those rules. Parents think they are “defending” their child when in reality you are doing them a huge disservice. There will always be rules, authority figures and “unfair” consequences in life. Get used to it. Showing her how to learn from her mistake and face the consequences head-on while mantaining respect for the rules & enforcers would have been a far more valuable lesson that her daughter was cheated out of. So very, very typical in this era.

  • Alig 2 years ago

    Most dress codes are inherently sexist. I teach in a high school and the boys are insulted that the adults think they will be distracted by a shoulder, belly button or mid drift. The girls just want to worry about their studies, not if they might show a little skin in a shirt or shorts. Our dress code is gradually getting better and less of a distraction in and of itself than many.

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    My daughter is kind of strict about dress code and doesn’t allow my granddaughter to wear some things the school does. However there are a few things mom allows the school won’t usually it’s the sleeves. Bottom line, agree or not we follow the rules.

  • Nikki A 2 years ago

    My 10 year old daughter likes to wear crop top too… But guess what,. I make her wear some kind of cami underneath it. I really don’t find it appropriate for any child of my daughter’s or this girls age to be wearing clothing that shows off their body. There are too many perverts in this world. The dress code is there for a reason and if my child broke it, I would expect her to be corrected for it too. I do agree that the reasoning, distracting the boys, was not appropriate. She should have simply been told that her shirt was in violation of the dress code and maybe shown the area of the dress code she violated.

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    If the speed limit is posted at 55 and you get a ticket for driving 70, are you going to try to make them change the speed limit because you got caught and reprimanded? I don’t know of many jobs that allow their workers to show thier undergarments or excessive skin unless it is a sexual-type of business. Why should it be allowed in schools? What are we teaching the kids if every time they are reprimanded for breaking the rules that they clearly know exist, we make excuses for them? At that age, it is a distraction for the boys and may make some male teachers uncomfortable. The minute one of them says something inappropriate to her or touches her inappropriately, the conversation will be very different. Follow the rules and you won’t have the issue. Before you comment, I am an educator of students in that age group and have been for 20+ rules. I tell my girls all the time to leave some mystery. You don’t have to show your body off just because. Boys should respect you for who you are and not for what you wear or what they perceive you to be because of your clothes.

  • Grandma in MI 2 years ago

    Let her wear the outfit at the mall, but rules are rules at school. My motto was “if anything hangs out when you raise your arms over your head or touch your toes, you can’t wear it to school or school functions”.

    • Kimberly Beasley 2 years ago

      Well, that’s not what the dress code says, though.

  • Bad Penguin 2 years ago

    I think the mother was using her daughter to start a problem so she could get some attention. Dress codes are there for a reason. Teenage girls (and boys) have no sense about the way they dress may be inappropriate. All the girls know is the boys show them more attention if they dress a certain way so they try to get away with it. Good for the school principal for not tolerating it.

  • Kimberly Beasley 2 years ago

    The only part of the dress code that is quoted in the article is: ““….extremely brief garments are not permitted … including garments in which any midriff skin is easily exposed.” I don’t think her outfit goes against the dress code. Very bad judgement on the school and teacher’s part. Even if found to be breaking the dress code, the school staff should be ashamed for the way they enforced the code. They are bullies and should be required to go some kind of class on how to deal with the dress code. They are BULLIES.

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      You obviously don’t know what a real bully is. I hope you don’t have to find out.

  • Grandma Bertha 2 years ago

    I’m amazed at how some kids dress today. I see kids from our high school walking home after classes and wonder if they actually left home that morning dressed that way. Showing any underwear shouldn’t be allowed. Underwear is just that UNDERwear! Under clothing, not showing it. Boys whose jeans sag so much one wonders how they step off a curb without dropping those sagging jeans. Not funny really. Ugly! That type sweater the 13 year old wore to school is also sloppy. I’m not a big fan of putting limits on choices. But, school is where we learn to follow certain rules, until old enough to make personal choices. At age 13, those choices are not applicable to wear-what-you-want to school. Saying rules be damned, they don’t apply to me. Moms should be saying that’s okay for the weekend at the mall, after school hanging with girlfriends, but not appropriate at school. We probably have all seen church goers being inappropriately dressed too. I’m frankly a little offended. No personal respect. And, showing no respect for the place or occasion. Grow up! Dress codes at school are there for reasons we may not all like. Tough! Bra straps, belly buttons, sagging jeans are not appropriate at school, period. Oh yeah, Have a nice day! Just keep underwear, and personal body parts covered.

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    Ok…where does the revealing stop? You bunch of cry babies don’t know what dress codes are..shame on a mother that says her daughter liked the outfit…then wear it off school property. She is only 13 why should she be wearing something like this to school to show skin..has she never been taught modesty?? You as a parent know the hormones that boys have at this age..and yes it would be distracting to them..yoh don’t blame them..this is how boys and men are wired..they are not women. So mom..stop pitching a fit like some snowflake and teach your daughter where it is appropriate to wear some outfits

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      School uniforms would solve this problem.

  • Diane Neff 2 years ago

    Dress codes are going overboard , also other people s comments , do some of you whom are judging this 13 yr old girl and her parents , not remember what it is like to be 13, and I personally didn’t see anything wrong with her outfit. Lots of you teacher’s and parents I’m sure when you were A teen wore clothing that was similar to what this girl wore to school . An out fit doesn’t distract young boys from paying attention in class . And you all should realize that teens build confidence and self-esteem when they wear clothes tha t they feel good in . . I wish schools and other places would stop and understand that .

We are excited to announce Dearly has joined forces with Mama’s Uncut. Helping Mom’s across the United States answer questions on life’s big challenges.