Gilbert dad strips off his clothes during school board meeting to protest new dress code

A Higley Unified School District father took off his clothes during a board meeting to reveal short and a crop top. (Source: azfamily)
Published: Oct. 11, 2023 at 6:25 AM MST|Updated: Oct. 11, 2023 at 11:29 AM MST
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GILBERT (3TV/CBS 5) - Ira Latham, a father of four Higley Unified School District students, took off his clothes during a board meeting in late September to reveal short shorts and a crop top. Latham said he wanted to make a clear argument about an updated dress policy he said is vague.

“As a dad, that’s very concerned about my children as well as everyone else’s kids in the district, I wanted to make a clear argument,” said Latham.

The former policy, which hadn’t been updated for more than two decades, wouldn’t allow for a student to expose their chest, abdomen or midriff. The updated version only restricts students from exposing their underwear.

“Before they had some guidance, but now they have no guidance. It’s just ‘kids cover your underwear’,” he said.

The board later voted 3 to 2 for the updated policy.

Anna Van Hoek, a Board Member who voted against the new rules, believes not all parents’ concerns are being heard.

“The fact that we have adults advocating for children to have less clothing on is absurd to me,” said Van Hoek.

She said this change will interfere with a student’s learning experience.

“That’s what we need to concentrate on, and I think it’s doing these kids a disservice by allowing them to be able to wear whatever they want to school,” said Van Hoek.

Another board member that voted for the updated policy, sent Arizona’s Family this statement.

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