Gay teen to miss prom after being banned from wearing tuxedo

A gay Louisiana high school student says she is going to skip her prom because the school's principal will not let her wear a tuxedo.

Claudettia Love is a senior and one of the top students in her class at Carroll High School in Monroe. Love said she was planning on going to prom with a group of friends, but now they are going to stay away.

"I told my mom, 'They're using me. They put me in all these honors and advanced placement classes so I can take all of these tests and get good grades and better the school, but when it's time for me to celebrate the fact that I've accomplished what I need to accomplish and I'm about to graduate, they don't want to let me do it, the way I want to,'" she told The News-Star.

Principal Patrick Taylor told the paper that the decision is part of the school's dress code and it is not anything personal.

Monroe City School Board President Rodney McFarland disagreed.

"Banning her from her prom just because of what she wants to wear — that's discrimination," he said. "As far as I know there is no Monroe City School Board policy saying what someone has to wear to attend the prom. You can't just go making up policies."

He said he planned to ask Superintendent Brent Vidrine to talk to Taylor.

Geraldine Jackson, Love's mother, said Taylor told her faculty members said they would not supervise the prom if girls wore tuxes.

"That's his exact words. 'Girls wear dresses and boys wear tuxes, and that's the way it is,'" she said.

Last year, Love was one of a group of students presented in a Monroe City School Board meeting as part of the school's high achieving medical magnet program. She also will represent the school at the annual Scholars' Banquet and has a full scholarship to Jackson State University.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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