A high school senior in Louisiana was stripped of her student government president title and scholarship opportunities after a video circulating on social media showed the 17-year-old girl dancing with friends at a party last week.
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Kaylee Timonet, a senior at Walker high school, was seen dancing at a private homecoming afterparty on 30 September, behind a friend who was twerking. Earlier this week, the school principal said he would revoke her leadership role and assistance in scholarship applications.
“They basically told me that I should be ashamed of myself,” Timonet told a local news outlet. “That I wasn’t basically following God’s ideals, which made me cry even more.”
The event, attended by Timonet’s mother, has sparked outrage and debate within the student body, with many sharing their support on social media by posting “Let the Girl Dance” banners. Some parents compared the school’s approach to the plot of the 1980s film Footloose.
The high school senior said that she was called into the principal’s office, and was made to watch the video of her dancing after she was informed that he was no longer endorsing her for a scholarship. The principal told Timonet that he “questioned her faith” after he saw the clip, according to the teen.
“I just started crying hysterically,” Timonet said. “I was really, really upset because student government is the best thing that happened to me during high school.”
Timonet’s mother, Rachel Timonet, said she was disappointed that she was not present during the meeting earlier this week. The mother, who was present at the event, added that the student body paid for the private venue at the Livingston Parish Country Club, as well as for the DJs performance.
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“They were just having fun,” Timonet’s mother said. “She should not be questioned or spoken about faith at all. It’s a public school, not a private school.”