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A teen was reportedly told she violated her high school's dress code because she is 'busty' — now she's seeking legal action

INSIDER logoINSIDER 9/13/2017 feedback@thisisinsider.com (Susanna Heller)

kelsey anderson © Provided by Business Insider Inc kelsey anderson The INSIDER Summary:

Student Kelsey Anderson was reportedly asked to leave class after her teacher accused her of breaking the school's dress code.
The 17-year-old was wearing a long-sleeve shirt and jeans at the time, and was reportedly told she was "busty" and "plus size."
The teen's mom, Melissa Barber, alleged that school officials defended the teacher during a meeting.
Barber shared the experience in a now-viral Facebook post.

Now, Anderson and Barber are seeking legal action against the high school.

Student Kelsey Anderson from Joplin, Missouri, claims that she was body-shamed by her high school teacher, and is now taking legal action against the high school.

The 17-year-old was told to leave class after her teacher said she violated her school's dress code by being "busty" and "plus[-]size," according to Cosmopolitan.

On September 8, Anderson's mom, Melissa Barber, shared her daughter's experience in a Facebook post that shows her outfit on the day she was pulled out of class: a long-sleeve shirt, jeans, and ankle boots. The Facebook post since gone viral with over 23,000 likes at the time of this story.

"When my daughter asked why she was being sent to the office, this teacher told her 'bustier women need to wear clothing that cover[s] their cleavage.' Then followed it up by saying 'Plus size women need to dress accordingly," Barber wrote in the caption. "My daughter has just been called 'Busty' and 'Plus-Size' in front of the entire class."

Now, Anderson and Barber are seeking legal action against Joplin High School.

"I was mortified by my teacher, of all people, saying something like this in front of my class," Anderson said in a press release provided by the mom and daughter's attorney to INSIDER. "When I was pulled into a meeting with the Principal, he told me that he had never heard of me being victimized before and he didn't really believe what I said."

According to the same press release, Anderson and Barber claim that the teacher said that "smaller busted women could get away with more than larger busted women."

Many people have shared their support for the duo in the comments of Barber's Facebook post.

"Wow, I see nothing wrong with what she is wearing," someone wrote. "It doesn't matter about her size! She is covered up appropriately and isn't showing anything. This is complete garbage," another person commented. "That teacher should not be doing that to your daughter. There is nothing wrong with her outfit! She is not 'plus size' either," a third person wrote.

However, not everyone agreed.

"If it slips down ANY... Let[']s be real... Cleavage would show. Not saying that's a big deal... But let[']s be honest," one Facebook user wrote. "Believe in a strick [sic] dress code. Great teacher," another person commented. "Oh please. Way to help your daughter become a crybaby," someone else wrote.

In her post, Barber alleged that when she came to Joplin High School for a meeting about the situation, school officials defended Anderson's teacher. Barber claims that the principal said the school has "never had a problem with" the teacher in the past.

Related: 11 Most Bizarre Dress Code Rules [Provided by Mom.me] Hoodies Get a Bad Rap: <p>Photo © copyright by Kelly Hogaboom http://vegantailor.com</p>Twenty-nine students at North High School in Akron, Ohio, got two-day suspensions in 2008 for wearing hoodies to school in violation of the dress code. The suspended students had reportedly received numerous warnings about the apparel, which administrators claimed made students more difficult to identify. Image via kellyhogaboom/Flickr 11 Most Bizarre Dress Code Rules

She also said that she was concerned that this situation would negatively impact her daughter's education. "This whole time she was missing out on an education while we were all sitting in a room discussing her b--bs," Barber wrote in her post. "How often does this happen to your sons? Seems like another way to keep girls uneducated."

Anderson asked to drop the class after the incident, but she said school officials wouldn't allow her to. "I asked to be accommodated so I don't have to go back to her class, but I was told no," she said in the press release.

The mom and daughter said they decided to seek legal action against the school to prevent students from being body-shamed by Joplin High School officials in the future. In a statement from their lawyer, they alleged that this wasn't the first time that a student has been body-shamed by a JHS staff member.

"I just don’t want any other girls to go through what I’ve been through and treated how I’ve been treated," Anderson said in the press release.

Here's Barber's full post:

I received a call from the school about my daughter being sent to the office for a dress code violation. I was told that the teacher was being unreasonable and obviously made a mistake. My daughter was speaking to the counsoler [sic] and I was asked to attend a meeting with her and the principal. (A different principal than the one I had just spoken with.) She was sent to the office by her Child Develoment [sic] teacher Mrs. Morris. When my daughter asked why she was being sent to the office, this teacher told her "bustier women need to wear clothing that cover their cleavage." Then followed it up by saying "Plus size women need to dress accordingly". My daughter has just been called "Busty" and "Plus Size" in front of the entire class. I was called to come to the school for a meeting with a counsoler (female) and a principal (male). This principal continued to defend the teacher by saying "Well, we have never had a problem with her before." I began explaining that my daughter was just sexualized by her teacher in front of the whole class. She was embarrassed and horrified. She requested to be removed from the teachers class. He said no. He continued to defend the teacher. I could see we were getting nowhere. I was close to loosing [sic] my temper. I took my daughter by the hand and we left. I refuse to put my daughter in a situation where her self esteem is completely destroyed. She is there to learn. This whole time she was missing out on an education while we were all sitting in a room discussing her b--bs. How often does this happen to your sons? Seems like another way to keep girls uneducated. #sheisnotadistraction  #letthegirlslearn 

INSIDER has contacted Joplin High School for comment.

Related Video: Father Sticks Up For Teen Daughter In Los Gatos Middle School Dress Code Debate [Provided by CBS SF Bay Area]

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