By Alexander Kacala
Dex Frier, a student at Johnson High School in Gainesville, Georgia, says school officials dismissed him from the prom ball king's ball this year because he was a transgender and was then asked to run as a ball queen candidate.
"I ask that my identity be respected and included," Ferry, 17, told NBC News. "I want to emphasize that withdrawing from the King's vote and giving me the opportunity to run for the title of Queen should not have been the way to remedy this situation."
Lisa Frier, Frier's grandmother and guardian, said that her grandson had told her more than a month ago that he had been nominated by her peers for the title of King of Frier. ball.
"They probably voted for him because he is incredibly talented, extremely diverse, very endearing, very insightful and intelligent. I think the group he is associated with is very valuable, "she said. "But maybe they also try to make a statement:" Let's be loving, kind and inclusive, "which is one of the currencies of the school.The administration that withdraws it from the poll is by no means a representation of it. "
Lisa Frier says that Hall County School Superintendent Will Schofield is responsible for the removal of his grandson – who has begun to identify as a boy in his second year of high school – as polling king of the ball. Schofield appeared to refuse the claim in an email sent to NBC News.
"First, this school district has never removed any students from a prom or court back home," wrote Schofield. "In addition, I will not respond publicly, in any way whatsoever, to a situation likely to distinguish a student in any way whatsoever. We protect the privacy rights of our student body. "
Lisa Frier said it was not the first time that school officials discriminated against her family because of her gender identity or sexual orientation.
"Three years ago, when my oldest homosexual grandson tried to write about the joys of going out in his yearbook, he was forced to publish it," she explained. .
A petition calling for the return of Frier to the royal election has gathered nearly 14,000 signatures by Friday morning.
The petition, which was launched less than a week ago, said: "Not only are we baffled by this decision, but we are seriously disappointed by the Hall County School Board. The two fundamentals of Hall County Schools are on their webpage: "The Most Compassionate Place in the World" and "Character, Skill and Rigor … for All". The decision made by Mr. Schofield reflects neither one nor the other County Schools and is rather the exposure of a transphobic attitude that puts it much more at risk than Dex. "
"Our request is simple: allow Dex Frier to stay as a male member of the Johnson High School Promotion Tribunal," the petition continues.
Two competing petitions asserting the exclusion of King Fier's prom have less than 100 signatures combined. One of them titled "If your birth certificate indicates that you are a man, you can be the king of prom promos at Johnson High. By agreeing to sign this petition, we can make it a tradition in our school and have fun at prom. "
In response to this vote, Frier said, "The fact that I'm trans does not give anyone the right to part with all cis men. I am a man like any other who attends our school and if you can not stand the idea of a transgender man beating you for a meaningless title during a dance in high school, you probably should not run yourself. "
"One of the fears I have is that we have opened a window that a lot of bad people are going through and that's my biggest fear for him," Lisa Frier said. "But I think it's very important that we make a statement and defend what we believe in."
Lisa Frier added that she hoped the school would leave him on the ballot and allow him to be part of the ball king's court.
"I just hope that he'll be able to go to the prom on Saturday night and have fun," she said. "It must be left as it should be. He should never have been declared king. "
"It's not the ball of administration. It's the prom, "she added.
Prom at Johnson High School is Saturday.
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