A Kentucky teenager was expelled from her private, Christian school after her mother posted a picture of her celebrating her birthday with a rainbow cake while wearing a sweatshirt with a rainbow on it, The Louisville Courier-Journal reports. The rainbow color scheme is sometimes associated with the LGBTQ community.
Back in late December, Kimberly Alford brought her daughter, Kayla, to a Texas Roadhouse restaurant to celebrate her 15th birthday. As moms often do at their children’s birthday parties, Kimberly snapped pictures of the event and posted them to social media.
Those photos, Kimberly said, led to her daughter’s expulsion from Whitefield Academy, a private, Christian school in Louisville, Kentucky.
Kimberly explained that the problem was that Kayla was wearing a sweatshirt with horizontal, colored bars representing a rainbow and eating a rainbow-themed cake. The rainbow is used as a symbol within the LGBTQ community and often appears on flags, decals, and clothing.
The pictures somehow came to the attention of Whitefield Academy’s head of school, Bruce Jacobson. Not long afterwords, Kimberly got an email saying that Kayla had been expelled.
“[The picture] demonstrates a posture of morality and cultural acceptance contrary to that of Whitefield Academy’s beliefs [and follows two years of] lifestyle violations,” the email said.
Kimberly said that her daughter is “athletic” and sometimes dresses like a “tomboy,” but is not gay. As for the rainbow cake, she produced a receipt from the baker that simply said a cake with “assorted colors.”
Jacobson, however, claimed there was more to the story than just the young woman being photographed wearing a rainbow sweatshirt and eating a rainbow cake.
“Inaccurate media reports are circling stating that the student in question was expelled from our school solely for a social media post. In fact, she has unfortunately violated our student code of conduct numerous times over the past two years,” he said.
He added that students can expect a “progression of discipline” if their behavior persists over a period of time and that the progression can end in expulsion.
Kimberly disputes that her daughter is or was a troublemaker with a history of discipline issues at school. She said her daughter was last disciplined in October 2019, when she was caught with Juul pods in her pocket. Her mother claimed Kayla has been on the straight and narrow ever since.
Kayla has since started attending a public school, after attending Whitefield since sixth grade. Kimberly said the support of Kayla’s friends at Whitefield and in her community has been “overwhelming.”