Ashley Heun was shocked when her 13-year-old daughter came home Tuesday with a letter from Southaven Middle School.
The letter, titled “Why Do Girls Suffer from Body Image?” explained that middle school girls have a negative body image and suffer from emotional issues due to their weight.
The letter read:
“We, the counselors of Southaven Middle School, would like to have an opportunity to offer some healthy literature to your daughter on maintaining a positive body image. We are also providing girls with shapewear, bras and other health products if applicable.”
The letter gave parents the option of checking yes or no if they want their daughters to receive counseling and shapewear products.
“I had to read it a few more times, to make sure I was actually reading what I was actually reading,” Ashley Heun told USA Today. “I mean, I was shocked, I was absolutely shocked. And honestly, I was angry.”
Heun emailed the principal, John Sartain, to share her concerns about offering her daughter SPANX.
“My 13-year-old daughter. Shapewear. If my daughter begged me for shapewear, I would tell her no. I would be concerned about her if she even asked. Now I find out that you are ENCOURAGING her to wear it.”
Sartain called Heun on Wednesday morning to explain that the middle school received a donation of SPANX, bras, and other undergarments.
He said the lingerie distribution program had been canceled after Heun and other parents raised concerns.
Heun reached out to the news media to address her concerns.
“While I know they had good intentions, it was just very ill conceived,” Heun said. “And I appreciate the fact that they want to help, because there are girls out there who don’t have access to bras or other essential items, for whatever reason.”
Heun said the decision to outfit her daughter in SPANX and Spandex should be made by her, not the school.