Florida high school under fire for altering photos of girls without permission

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Wednesday, May 26, 2021
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In total, 80 yearbook photos deemed inappropriate by officials at the school were altered, according to media reports.

ST. JOHNS, Florida -- Parents of some high school students in Florida are demanding an apology after the yearbook photos of their children were altered without permission.

In total, 80 yearbook photos deemed inappropriate by officials at Bartram Trail High School were altered, according to WJAX.

Riley O'Keefe was one of the students impacted.

She said her photos were photoshopped for the print edition of the yearbook.

"You're not only affecting their photo. It's not just for protecting them. You're making them uncomfortable and feel like their bodies aren't acceptable in a yearbook," she said.

O'Keefe said she wore the same outfit to the office and they told her it was fine.

After seeing the changed photo in the yearbook, she said she felt uncomfortable and wanted to speak up about it.

"I don't want girls to feel like they don't have a voice, especially girls who aren't...don't feel comfortable coming and speaking about it or something like that," she said.

WJAX reached out to the school.

In a statement, the school said: "Bartram Trail High School's previous procedure was to not include student pictures in the yearbook that they deemed in violation of the student code of conduct, so the digital alterations were a solution to make sure all students were included in the yearbook. At this point the school is offering refunds to any parents calling about this issue. The school is receiving feedback from parents/guardians/students on making this process better for next year."

Several other students were also impacted, including Zoe Iannone.

"I felt like confident that day and I looked good, in dress code. But when I sent it to my mom and all of saw it, I felt very sexualized, like that was what they were worrying about," she said.

The school says it is offering a refund to parents over the photoshopped pictures.

But one mother told WJAX that a refund doesn't cut it.

"Our daughters of Bartram deserve an apology," she said. "They are making them feel embarrassed about who they are."