Prom Suspension Upheld

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Friday, May 13, 2011 - 8:53am

School won't allow teen to go to prom after creative proposal.

James Tate is handling rejection much better than most young men his age.

The girl said she would go to the prom with him, but Shelton High School leaders banned him from prom because of the way he proposed -- those now famous cardboard letters on the school wall.

Days after his sign came down from the side of school and Tate developed a support system of more than 100,000 on Facebook and Twitter, Dr. Beth Smith, the headmaster of Shelton High School is not budging on her decision.

"I'm disappointed, but I don't think they would gain anything if they caved at this point," said Tate.

Tate's parents are also disappointed with the outcome and don't feel the punishment fits the crime so to speak.

They, however, are proud of James and say they'll continue to support his creativity.

"I thought the way he asked Sonali to prom was fantastic. He though the whole process through. He was safe and obviously if you talk to him, he can handle himself," said Jim Tate, James' dad.

Tate's classmates aren't taking the news as well.

Many have lashed out on Facebook creating several different "Fire Dr. Smith" pages and organizing a sit-in at school Friday morning.

"Everybody is going to be in the main lobby, sitting there peacefully, quietly, hopefully it goes good. It might not. They can't get all of us in trouble," Jessica Guerra, a 10th grade student, said.

But Tate hopes this ending is final, though not a happily ever after.

He admits the school has taught him one final lesson before graduation.

"Things escalate quickly, rash decisions should not be made on part of anyone and choose your words wisely," said Tate.
 

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