Mom says she was dress-coded by high school after trying to enroll daughter in classes

Kerry Justich
Joselyn Lewis says that she wasn't allowed on school property because of what she was wearing. (Photo: KPRC)
Joselyn Lewis says that she wasn't allowed on school property because of what she was wearing. (Photo: KPRC)

The mother of a Houston high student said that she couldn’t enroll her daughter in classes because she wasn’t allowed on school premises in her outfit, making her wonder if the district has a dress code for parents.

According to Houston outlet KPRC, Joselyn Lewis wore a Marilyn Monroe dress and a head scarf when she went to enroll her 15-year-old daughter at James Madison High School in Houston, Texas. But when she arrived, an administrator wouldn’t even allow Lewis on the property because of what she was wearing.

“She said that my head scarf was out of dress code and my dress was too short,” Lewis told KPRC.

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Initially, the mother thought that she was mistaken for a student and quickly explained that she was a parent coming to enroll her daughter. Still, she alleged that the administrator maintained that Lewis “was not in dress code.”

“I could see if it’s a student. Yes, they have a dress code, I understand that,” Lewis told KPRC. “But I’m not a student, so I have no dress code. So who are you to tell me how to dress?”

Lewis demonstrated that her dress would pass the finger length test in an interview with KPRC and said that she was wearing the head scarf because she was in the process of getting her hair done. Regardless, she thinks her outfit shouldn’t have mattered.

“I wanted to see proof of where it says parents can come dressed a certain way, but it wouldn’t show me that,” Lewis said. “I wouldn’t leave, so they called the police department. They called them on me and I guess he was coming to tell me to leave, but I was already on the phone with the school board.”

James Madison High School didn’t respond to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment. However, its website has a list of parent responsibilities, omitting any specific regulations regarding how a parent should be dressed. Still, Lewis told KPRC that she planned on going back to the school on Tuesday in a different outfit to attempt to enroll her daughter again.

“My child’s education, anyone’s child’s education should be more important than what someone has on, that shouldn’t matter,” she said.

Yahoo Lifestyle was unable to get in touch with Lewis. However, she told KPRC that she had unenrolled her daughter from Lamar High School earlier on Monday because of bullying that the teenager had faced. Administrators at Lamar didn’t express any issue with what Lewis was wearing.

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