Homecoming King and Queen is old News. Now we have Homecoming Royalty

Homecoming King and Queen is old News. Now we have Homecoming Royalty

Homecoming is a yearly tradition that almost every High School celebrates in the United States. The highlight of the event is crowning the homecoming King and Queen. One school, however, chose a different route for their homecoming crown. King and Queen were no longer the reigning title and ‘Homecoming Royalty’ became the new title for the long-standing tradition.

White Station High School’s new title for the Homecoming Crown: King and Queen is old News. Now we have Homecoming Royalty
Image Courtesy – AitPost

White Station High is a school in Memphis, Tennessee. This year the school conducted its homecoming ceremony with a twist.  Traditionally, the way proms crown a prom king and queen, homecoming ceremonies have a similar practice. This year, however, White Station High School decided to make their homecoming title gender-neutral, removing king and queen, and replacing it with royalty. Hence, the title ‘Homecoming Royalty’ was born.

Brandon Allen, a high school student who identifies himself as gay, was crowned ‘Homecoming Royalty’ at the ceremony. Dawning a stunning floor-length, glittery off-shoulder dress, Allen was crowned in the middle of the football field. In an interview with Huffington Post, the self-proclaimed “Queen of Extra” said that the choice to wear the gown was to showcase the royalty he believes he is.

“So I want to rock a dress and look like a queen”.

-As reported by Huffington Post

Allen is also a member of the homecoming court. Along with the title of royalty, the student was also given a beautiful golden tiara, a bouquet of flowers, and a green sash announcing her title. The school posted a photo of Allen wearing his sequinned dress, crown and holding the bouquet on their Facebook and Twitter pages. He looks stunning in his attire. Furthermore, the newly crowned royalty looks shocked in the pictures, capturing the moment the title was announced. On social media, the school congratulated Allen on winning the title.

Congrats to Homecoming Royalty winner Brandon Allen! #SpartanPride #ThisisSparta Photo Credit to Emmett Campbell @whitestationshield

Posted by White Station High School on Saturday, 28 September 2019

The facebook post soon started receiving thousands of reshares, making the photograph, event, and school viral. On Twitter, the post has over 5,000 likes. However, the reactions to the post were mixed.

Many supported while others were against the event:

Many congratulated and praised the student. One Alumni took to social media to show their support tweeting: “Proud to have gone to school here. I’m so happy for him and hope he had a great night”.

However, there were also haters who expressed their disapproval, calling the photo “weird” and “an embarrassment”. Carrye Holland, the school principal, defended Allen on Facebook, commenting:

“Here’s the thing: it’s Brandon’s right to run for homecoming court under Title IX. It’s the students’ choice of who they want to support as homecoming royalty.”

-As reported by Huffington Post

She continued writing that she felt proud to be the principal of White Station High School. Her measured comment was a reply to all the haters.

“I’m exceedingly proud to be the principal of our amazing school. [she continued] You don’t have to agree but disrespectful comments will be deleted. WSHS loves and supports everyone regardless of who they are or what they believe. Thank you for the love and light from so many of you.”

-As reported by Huffington Post

Why the change from King and Queen to Royalty?

The School switched from the traditional titles to ‘Homecoming Royalty’ to embrass a gender-neutral title for the ceremony. Emmett Campbell, a student photographer at the ceremony, only had praises for the principal. He told Huffington Post that Holland “genuinely cares about us students” driving efforts to give them a more comfortable environment at school. He also noted that ever since his principal assumed the role from vice pricipal this year, it has made a phenomenal impact on the school.

Furthermore, the superintendent for Shelby County Schools, Memphis, supported the step taken by principal Holland and the school. Joris Ray, the superintendent tweeted,

“Shelby County Schools policy prohibits discrimination, and the District is committed to ensuring a positive and respectful school environment where everyone is treated with dignity.

“Homecoming queen and king is a tradition based 100 percent on student votes. As Superintendent, I support student voice and expression.”

Allen was grateful and happy for the love and support he received from his school and principal. He told Huffington Post that he was very happy to know that his principal “stood up” for him. Furthermore, he added, “She is such an awesome principal”.
Allen also shared a message to other students, especially those who were wanting to break down barriers. He said,
“Don’t you dare ever change yourself for anyone else but you! You are beautiful you are unique and you’re special. Don’t ever second guess your existence or feelings for a second.”
-As reported by Huffington Post

Schools play a big role in nurturing future generations and the ideologies they carry. Hence, many schools are these days introducing inclusive curriculums, educating students on the history and concepts of the LGBTQIA+ community. Knowing that schools are taking active steps to provide a diverse and environment to its students, is a sign of progress for the community.

Also Read: What’s this? World’s first Gender Neutral dolls by Mattel that are “free of labels”

Source Credit: CBS News, Huffington Post, Pink News

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