Memphis Middle School Students Shamed Into Pulling Up Their Pants
“Fresh air, rollin’ down a window
Too many Urkels on your team, that’s why your wins low.” — Kanye West
While Steve Urkel is an internationally recognized pop culture icon, it’s highly unlikely anyone wants to dress like him (regardless of how close the trends come to pulling off his nerdy look).
This goes double for middle school students, who want more than anything to fit in and be “cool.”
In Memphis, TN, the principal at West Side Middle School has used the über-nerd and the power of humiliation to get a clear and simple message across to students: No sagging.
What happens if the students fail to respond to this message? Well, as principal Bobby White would say, they get “Urkeled.”
The students in violation of the dress code are sent to the principal’s office where their pants are pulled up, sometimes up to chest height, and fastened into place with a zip tie which is difficult to remove. They then take photos sporting the look, which are added to a wall of shame for all to see.
Thus far, it seems to work pretty effectively. If you come to school “looking like a fool with your pants on the ground,” you’ll look even more foolish when they are forcibly pulled all the way up.
Now you can say what you want about children and public shame, but the fact of the matter is, humiliation is a very effective socialization/correctional tool.
Plus, it could be worse. They could make repeat offenders do the dance named for the Family Matters character.
If the kids continue to respond well to the innovative punishment, maybe Jaleel White will come to the school as a guest speaker for them later in the school year?