Iowa girl Dezi Hughes, who was kidnapped by a convicted sex offender four months ago, was forced to sit out of a volleyball game Tuesday because her school did not believe she dressed well enough during the day.
Instead of wearing slacks and a long sleeve shirt, which the school argued promotes school pride, Hughes wore shorts and cowboy boots to school.
Since the kidnapping, Hughes has played volleyball as a kind of therapy.
“Every therapist that we have seen so far tells us that she needs an extracurricular activity,” Jeanette Andrews, Hughes’ mother, said. “I mean really? It’s the one place where she doesn’t have to think about it.”
Southeast Webster-Grand Superintendent Launi Dane said she understands the sensitivity of the situation, but that there will always be rules that Hughes must follow as she grows into an adult.
“We have a good conduct policy, I can’t bend that,” Dane said. “There are certain expectations.”
She added that the entire community is still grieving over Hughes and her friend Kathlynn Shepard, who was murdered, and that she has to consider the well-being of other students as well.