STOCKTON (CBS13) — A Stockton high school student posted critical comments about her school education online. Now her school is banning her from its graduation ceremony.
“I’m confused, disappointed in my own school you know,” Saint Mary’s High School senior Alexis Irvine said.
Just days away from the pomp and circumstance of a graduation ceremony with her senior class, Irvine is now banned from participating in the time-tested tradition.
“It’s just very heartbreaking,” Irvine said.
Her St. Mary’s High School marquee reads “Be who you are and be that well.” She says the school is not practicing what it’s preaching.
“I wanted to express some opinions because I felt like that was something I experienced and I wanted to share that with people and I got condemned for it,” Irvine said.
Raw: Extended Interview With Alexis Irvine
Irvine posted part of a college entrance essay on her Twitter account which read in part, “Saint Mary’s repetitively put time and money into bettering the sports program…rather than upgrading our education and our school.” A hashtag “#letlexywalk” has also been started to try and spread her story.
Her post also included allegations of outdated learning tools and dirty conditions.
Saint Mary’s High School President Jim Brusa said the post broke the school’s electronic use policy, which includes a section about undermining the school’s mission.
He issued a statement reading, in part:
“The student’s posts on Twitter do not reflect nor support Saint Mary’s High School’s Mission and Philosophy.”
The statement continued, “The student is allowed to graduate but will not be participating in the Graduation ceremony.”
“Their actions are very questionable,” Irvine’s mother Cynthia Martinez said.
Martinez says the school’s punishment is a disproportionate reaction that should have been handled better.
“I mean what does this say to kids about being honest, and about expressing their experiences,” Martinez said.
This is not Irvine’s first time making headlines at the school. CBS13 talked to her first in 2014 when she was the only girl on the freshman football team. She played wide receiver. Four years later, she’s tackling a different a topic. Crossing the goal line for her high school career, with her own school banning her from attending its ceremony celebration.
“They don’t want me around,” Irvine said.
Irvine says she is going to college next year. She will be enrolling at Sonoma State University in the fall. She hopes to one day work in law enforcement.