Students at one Georgia high school recently faced the pressures of matching their prom dates' corsage color, not skin color.
Wilcox County High School recently held its first school-sanctioned integrated prom. This historic event came a year after four best friends—two Black girls and two white girls—from the school organized their own integrated prom.
“I’m absolutely sure that there are teachers that are still in the system right now that are at my school and they still don’t want an integrated prom,” said Mareshia Rucker, one of the original organizers.
The 400-student school in rural Rochelle, Georgia, came under national scrutiny last year after a student-led campaign publicly protested the school's long-standing segregated proms tradition. A wave of support also came in from across the country, with the protest's Facebook page collecting almost 30,000 likes and the students receiving money donations for the event fees and numerous volunteer offers.
Held in a nearby town, the 2013 protest integration prom was attended by about half of the school's student body.
Up until now, parents have been tasked with organizing the white-only and Black-only events each year since the school was first integrated in the 1970s.
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(Photo: Courtesy of WMAZ-TV)