May 24, 2016 1:12 PM

Portsmouth woman to speak out against vandalism at her home after graduation gown debate

PORTSMOUTH - The city woman whose home was vandalized after she spoke out against a change to Portsmouth High School’s graduation gowns said she will speak to the School Board Tuesday night as planned.

She went before school officials last week to argue in favor of keeping maroon gowns for boys and white gowns for girls at graduation. The next day, vandals spray-painted "Burn in Hell" and "Racist Scum Die" on her home. Someone also threw eggs at her home.

She told she plans to speak tonight "to exactly what's going on in the school system."

Ricci said students also crumpled fliers she was handing out at a senior assembly and threw them at her

“One girl threw it at me and told me to (expletive) off,” said Ricci, a 1979 graduate of Portsmouth High.

The School Board voted to go to a unisex graduation gown that is maroon with white trim. Ricci believes the change was made because of a transgender student in the graduating class who had a problem with the practice of wearing different colored gowns.

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