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Dad Angrily Calls Out Middle School For Asking Kids to Dress Based on Their Relationship Status

This probably sends the wrong message about consent.

Iowa Middle and High School

One Louisiana dad is calling out his child’s middle school for asking kids to show up on the first day of spirit week with a shirt that will signify their relationship status. Iowa Middle and High School actually share one campus, and the theme for Monday was “stoplight day.”

Students were told that green means single, yellow means it’s complicated, and red means that the student is taken. After M.J. Mouton, the dad in question, got on Twitter to call the whole thing “totally inappropriate,” his comment was shared over 20,000 times.

“Kids should be kids. Sure, some middle school kids are going to have boyfriends and girlfriends and crushes, but I don’t think we need the school to play matchmaker for a 10 to 14-year-old,” Mouton said. “Middle school kids are in an extremely vulnerable state — dealing with peer pressure, making friends, typical school stresses.”

Per a Greenwich Time report, the issue had been handled and the school has ensured that something like this will never happen again. Beyond the fact that the school was already about to shamelessly put hundreds of kids on the spot, either for their relationship status or unwillingness to participate, it also sends a weird message about consent.

A green shirt should never mean ‘available’ and, similarly, a red shirt should not indicate that you are so involved with someone else that no one should approach you. Adults should never encourage kids or teens to use any type of signal for availability, that is short of a confident verbal confirmation. Even if stoplight day was just for a day, that’s too long to send that message.