Cross-dressing theme day sparks controversy at high school - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Cross-dressing theme day sparks controversy at high school

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MIDDLETON (WKOW)-- It's tradition at Middleton High School for seniors to have dress up days the final week of school. However, when the administration caught wind today's theme was cross-dressing day, they said it would not be allowed, sparking controversy at the school.

A note went home to students and parents Tuesday, reminding them that the cross-dressing theme would not be allowed, but some of the seniors didn't agree with the decision and did it anyway.

Chrissy Wolf decided to borrow her boyfriend's clothes for cross-dressing day, even after the administration condemned the theme.

“I definitely do support anyone struggling with gender identity so I think it was a great way to support them and show them that we're supportive,” Chrissy said.

Superintendent Don Johnson says the administration wanted to be respectful of the LGBT community, who earlier in the year asked the school board to include them in the discrimination policy.

“They talked about being alienated and ignored, harassed, name-called in some cases, and so they were asking for support,” Johnson said.

Johnson says this was a chance to show that support. And though some in the LGBT community said they were ok with the theme, he said there is no way to ensure that every student felt that way.

“I don't think that some of our students thought about how this could be discriminatory,” Johnson said. “So this is kind of a teachable moment for us.”

Chrissy, however, says the day was never about alienating anyone.

“Just to see what they experience on a daily basis or even just to experiment yourself and have it be ok for a day,” Chrissy said.

At the end of the day, both sides say their positions are about inclusion not exclusion.

Superintendent Johnson did say that though cross-dressing for the theme day was not allowed, students who are transgender or who regularly cross-dress can do so.

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