COOK CO., GA (WALB) - Students at Cook High School are outraged after learning they will not be allowed to wear honor cords for non-academic achievements at graduation.
"Growing up I always saw the seniors with all their cords on bright and colorful. You always wait for the day you can put on all your cords and now you're not going to be able to see those cords from the stands," says Cook High School Senior and class secretary Mary Kate Register.
An online petition has gained more than 630 signatures asking the administration to reconsider their decision.
One comment by Lisa Bostick says, "Can't believe they would want to diminish the accomplishments of these students. Let them keep the cords and sashes that they worked so hard for."
However, the administration said in a statement to WALB, "As the number of cords being presented has grown, the importance of the historic honor cords and stoles is being diminished."
Therefore, only academic honor students will receive honor cords.
"It's great to be an honor student and that's a great accomplishment!" says Register, "But some of the students might not have that and that doesn't mean they're not as good as the honor students. They may have special qualities in other things that they should get to show off."
Non-academic achievements, such as clubs and service work, will be recognized with pins. Students say that's still not enough and they will continue to fight for their cords.
"We hope they at least allow us to vote on it to see what the kids really want considering this is our graduation," explains Register.
Cook High School administration says they have not received any formal complaints and have only seen those posted on social media.