TACOMA, Wash. – A Washington state grandmother claims her 5-year-old granddaughter was discriminated against recently when the girl’s school celebrated “Blue Friday.”
“She walked up to me and I knew something was wrong,” the grandmother, Fawn Allen, told Fox 31. “She just kind of put her head down and said, Grandma, Mrs. Watson told me I can’t wear my Broncos dress. If I don’t have a Seahawks shirt I have to wear my uniform.”
Allen said the child’s teacher at Edison Elementary School in suburban Seattle is a staunch Seahawks fan and didn’t appreciate Allen’s granddaughter wearing a Denver Broncos cheerleader outfit on the school’s special day. Allen didn’t appreciate how her granddaughter was treated, and took her frustrations up with the school’s principal, Fox Q 13 reports.
“The rules at school is they can wear whatever team that they want to,” Allen said. “We trust her to this teacher every day … to teach her, to protect her, to build up her self-esteem not tear her down because of a football game.”
The brave young girl went all out with her Broncos gear on Blue Friday, an outfit that also included Broncos earrings and a Broncos necklace. Payton Manning is the best football player, ever, the girl told reporters.
A Tacoma school district spokesman said it’s unclear on what, exactly, the teacher told the student about her Broncos dress, but confirmed students can wear the team colors of their choice.
“The teacher didn’t understand the full scope of what Blue Friday means and sought clarification from the principal,” according to a school district statement. “Blue Friday means all teachers and students can wear gear from whatever team they want.”
The story generated a lot of comments on Facebook.
MORE NEWS: How to prepare for face-to-face classes
“This bullying rap is getting out of hand. Shame on the ‘adult’ teacher for even saying anything to a 5-year-old about representing her favorite team,” Rachel Marie posted. “I happen to … represent the Seahawks, but everyone is entitled to like whatever team they so choose. I don’t knock anyone for their choice in teams, unless it’s friends and out of fun. This woman should be suspended for harassing/ bullying a child.”
“Wear your gear proudly baby!” Natalie Hunter wrote. “The teacher should apologize to her in front of the class.”
“She’s just a kid. I say wear any team you want, except the Patriots! Go Hawks!” Ashley Corrigan added.
Some also pointed out that the school event – Blue Friday – is misleading.
“… Why call it ‘Blue Friday’ if it’s meant for any team? Why not just ‘team Friday,’ or something more universal? Clearly it’s implying you should wear Seahawks gear,” Brittney Lynn wrote, receiving 34 likes. “I can’t blame the teacher for misunderstanding.”
Others countered that it doesn’t really matter.
“She misunderstood, yet asked the principal after upsetting the girl. That’s where I see fault,” Celina Brady commented. “Ask before addressing a nonexistent issue.”