Your Voice Matters (YVM5)

“Dress Code” is a phrase that gets many teens’ blood boiling. Today, our story centers around issues that may start with dress code, but are much larger, like decency, artistic expression, respectability, and legacy.

A student named Sydney Spies, from Durango Senior High School in Colorado, submitted a senior picture for the school yearbook that was a little out of the ordinary. It shows her posing provocatively in a black shawl and short yellow skirt that exposes plenty of skin. Sydney is interested in pursuing a career in modeling after high school and wished to portray her interest in her picture, much like athletes often pose in their sport uniform, or musicians pose with their instrument. After a period of time, Sydney was informed her picture was inappropriate for the yearbook and would not run. Sydney and her mother protested the decision outside the school, believing the administration was responsible. That story from the Huffington Post – Denver is here.

The story takes a turn when we find out the yearbook staff, composed of students, was actually responsible for putting a halt on the photo. Story from the Durango Herald here. “The administration really had nothing to do with it,” said Tevan Trujillo, a student yearbook editor. “It was us.”

The story has now gone national and a poll appears on the NBC Today Show website, along with the story. The poll asks whether the photo is appropriate for a yearbook? As of this writing, over ten thousand people have participated in the poll.

Teens, clearly, your voice matters. One teen is taking a stand on her right to express herself, while others are defending their publication’s and school’s integrity. Both have valid arguments which you may agree or disagree with, but the fact that both sides are standing up for what they believe in is what I want to call attention to with this post. These young people are making their voices matter, and in a constructive manner. Hopefully, the debate will continue in a non-hostile fashion, whatever the outcome.

Leave a comment about your opinion on the pictures and what you believe is appropriate for a yearbook, or comment on how these teens have conducted themselves during this dispute.


About Alan Tucker

Writer, Dad, Graphic Designer, Soccer Coach … not necessarily in that order!

Posted on January 9, 2012, in Your Voice Matters. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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