(By Maryl Garateix, Herald staff writer) Herald 4-22-94
They wore flowery, flowing skirts. Skirts with moon patterns. Plain ones. Plaids.
A handful of Nova High School male students Thursday put on a show of solidarity with one of their buddies who was sent home two days earlier for wearing a skirt.
"Girls can wear pants, so why can't guys wear skirts?", asked sophomore Jesse Itzkowitz, 16, who strolled to classes in a skirt with tiny flowers, a green and yellow checkered shirt and gray high-top sneakers.
"It's not right. It's flagrant sexism, and we don't feel we should be tormented with that in a learning environment," Itzkowitz said.
Men in skirts are the latest fad to hit trendy spots from South Beach to Seattle. The fashion movement started about a year ago with celebrities like Axl Rose of Guns 'N Roses and Nirvana's lead singer, Kurt Cobain.
At Nova, in Davie, students got angry when administrators made junior Gavin Snyder, 17, go home Tuesday for wearing a skirt to school.
They passed out fliers Wednesday urging all male students to wear skirts or dresses, then called the media.
Thursday, Itzkowitz and about a dozen other male students showed up in dresses and skirts - short and long - borrowed from female friends or sisters.
"They make good fashion sense," said Snyder, who left his skirt at home Thursday, "They're stylish and they leave you much more room to move around."
Administrators gave Snyder three options Tuesday, said Assistant Principal C. Dege Robertson: Stay in the office, remain in internal suspension or go home. He choose to go home.
Robertson said she based her decision on the code of student conduct handbook that says students have the right to wear stylish clothes as long as they do not distract or offend others.
School officials were told some students might object to the skirt.
"I felt that the clothing would cause undue attention," Robertson said. "It's important to have as few distractions as possible."
But Robertson said she plans to bring up the issue of skirt-wearing male students at the next administrative staff meeting.
"I understand times change and things change," she said.
Administrators didn't punish students who protested Thursday.
"It's kind of stupid that we can't wear what we want," said sophomore Evan Silverman, 16, he sported a long, black patterned number.
Sophomore Nick Underwood, 16, didn't wear a skirt to school Thursday, although he did wear one a few months ago. School officials asked him to change. He did.
"I just wore it for the heck of it," he said. "I thought it was kind of cool."