Two pregnant teens in Michigan who were going to have their yearbook photos taken were surprised to find out that their school had banned their bulging bellies from being shown.
Deonna Harris, one of the pregnant students, was taken aside by a staff member after they took her photo. They said they had to retake it because the first shot showed her pregnancy, and that was not allowed at White Cloud High School.
"She said, 'We have to re-take this picture.' I was kind of confused and asked what was wrong with it, and she was like, 'Well, the yearbook teacher told me you can't have your belly in it so we have to retake it,'" Harris said.
Kimberly Haney, also pregnant, said she was not allowed to show her midsection either. She said she went into the bathroom and cried after she learned of it.
The girls decided to not have their pictures in the yearbook, believing the school was discriminating against them.
The school district believes showing the pregnant bellies is against the state's mandate that public schools' sex-education curricula be based on abstinence.
"It's our feeling…that the photos could very well be a contrary message to the state policy," Superintendent Barry Seabrook said. "We're not saying they can't have their photos in the yearbook."
Meanwhile, Haney and Harris do not understand why they couldn't show their bellies in the photos when they are allowed to walk around the school showing them.
"What's the difference of letting me walk for graduation, letting me walk around the school? It's the same thing," Haney said.
This isn't the first time the pregnancy of a teen resulted in an exclusion from the high school year book. One North Carolina girl's photo was excluded from the Wheatmore High School yearbook after they decided that the photo of her holding her son would promote teen pregnancy.