A Florida high school is being ripped for bizarrely opting to photoshop yearbook pictures of some female students.
Bartram Trail High School in St. Johns County didn’t give students a head’s up, and many were surprised to see the results when the yearbook was released last week, according to PEOPLE.
Some pictures were altered to cover up the chests of female students.
One of them, Zoe Iannone, had just started growing her hair back after losing it because of a disease when the photo was taken.
“She went to trouble to look nice that day. She knew she couldn’t control her hair, so she wanted to control for other variables,” her mother, Amanda Emery told PEOPLE.
The mother said Zoe, who is now 15, but was 14 at the time, felt “gross” when she realized the photoshop would draw attention to her body.
“If they hadn’t done that, there wouldn’t be any attention on it,” Emery said. “She just felt disgusted, really, and she felt sexualized. Her question is, ‘Why is somebody at the school looking at a photograph of me as a 14-year-old girl and seeing something inappropriate and sexual when I was not out of dress code?’ That’s most troubling to her.”
Another student, Riley O’Keefe, 15, had a black bar placed over her chest in her photo.
O’Keefe’s mother, Amanda Fabre, told PEOPLE the teen said she wanted to cry. “They butchered these girls’ pictures. And it created a problem where there was none,” Fabre said.
While the school has a code of conduct, which says clothing must not be “revealing or distracting,” the students were told they didn’t violate it.
St. Johns County School Superintendent Tim Forson told PEOPLE in a statement that there was “not sufficient review” of the steps taken before the decision to edit select photos was made, and that the district will work with the staff member involved to “change how we determine the contents of the yearbook in the years ahead.”