Dozens of San Diego high school students have reportedly been suspended, banned from prom, and asked to sit out from graduation ceremonies after appearing in a now-viral group dance video as the “Scripps Ranch High School Twerk Team.”
But it’s not the fact that the 33 students skipped class, filmed on school grounds, or even used Scripps Ranch equipment to edit the video and upload it to YouTube that has administrators upset – it’s the nature of the dance itself.
According to NBC San Diego, “twerking” videos violate Scripps Ranch’s sexual harassment policy prohibiting “verbal, visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature
Some online are calling the punishment harsh, given that all the students did was dance -- but popular as the craze (and YouTube videos featuring it) may be, twerking is no Gangnam Style.
- A style of club dance thought to have been introduced into the hip-hop culture by way of the New Orleans bounce music scene in the early 90's, twerking (closely related to "booty popping") involves the well-coordinated shaking of one's hips, legs and pelvis.Sometimes the move is performed upside down against a wall (wall twerking), a move popularized in Diplo's video for "Express Yourself."
- The former Disney star got plenty of attention in March after posting a video of herself twerking in a unicorn onesie online:
- The craze has extended itself far beyond dance floors into the worlds of comedy, art and web culture as well.
- But for the 33 Scripps High School students suspended over this dance, twerking is no laughing matter right now.
Some, like the two students below (whose tweets are now protected) were being vocal about their opposition to the punishment on Twitter.
- A #FreeTheTwerkTeam hashtag has emerged in the wake of this news, with many lending words of support to those suspended: