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‘Embarrassed’ girls turned away from homecoming dance due to inappropriate dresses

Posted at 10:51 AM, Sep 22, 2014
and last updated 2014-09-25 16:49:47-04

SOUTH JORDAN, Utah — Nearly a dozen girls said they were turned away from their high school’s homecoming dance in Utah over the weekend due to their style of dress.

“They said I either have to go home and get something to go under, or I’m not allowed in,” student Tayler Gillespie told “So I just decided to leave.”

Assistant principal Janalee Taylor said the school’s dress code for dances was clear: “Hemlines should go no higher than mid-thigh when seated.” 

That, the assistant principal said, was why the girls were told to go home and change.

Tayler Gillespie was not allowed to attend her high school prom.

Tayler Gillespie was not allowed to attend her high school prom.

“They pulled me to the side and asked me to twirl around to see if I was immodest, then made me sit against the wall,” student Erika Shepherd said. “And while I was sitting against the wall there was about ten other girls that were sitting there being embarrassed.”

Upset parents who went to the school to speak to the adults who would not let their daughters into the dace said they had a hard time getting answers.

“I asked them why they turned her away and then showed them a picture of her on the phone I’d taken myself of her sitting down where the dress meets her knees,” Tayler’s father Chad Perhson said.

Assistant principal Taylor said the dress code was on the school’s website, attached to dance tickets and reinforced during an assembly.