Dress Code … Drool

An interesting topic from “The Blurb” team.


The Blurb, Staff Writer

The Blurb, GUEST OPINION: The following opinions are not those of The Owl; however, by allowing the free speech of these collaborators, we are providing a platform to encourage mature dialogue.

A well-known fact of SHS is a dress code pertaining to students and teachers. We, as students, have to follow a dress code that forbids people from wearing certain, more comfortable clothing. Some well-known cases are tank tops, basketball shorts, hats, etc. (Things we’ve talked about before.) And we suppose that these may, just may make sense.

Exhibit A: According to the dress code, “unless authorized by a doctor, hats, visors, head coverings, sweatshirt or coat hoods, or bandannas may NOT be worn in the building between 8:30-3:30.” This could make sense, but we have issues with some of these. The reason for not wearing hats and visors is so that the cameras are not obstructed. However, in class there are no cameras per school policy (except in a few rooms), so it makes no sense to not wear a hat. (Especially hats such as toques and beanies, which in no way obstruct the face.) Another thing of note is the bandana. Bandanas have been disallowed by staff due to “promoting gang violence.” However, very few colors of bandanas actually have local gang affiliations. Red, blue, and yellow bandanas are the only ones with major gang affiliations (but locally?). Some other bandanas are worn for extremely positive purposes! For example, the pink bandana can be worn for breast cancer awareness, and white bandanas have represented peace and unity. Furthermore, they can be used in various religions as a way to protect yourself. In the pagan/wiccan community, they are used as veils to protect your spirit. In the Islam community they can, and commonly are, used as hijabs to conform with the religion. These are very important dress codes to these religious groups, and it feels wrong to deny them of their right to expression of religion. Sure, you could say, “Hey, I’m wearing this for religious reasons” but students may feel uncomfortable and think they will get mistreated.

Exhibit B: Tank tops and ‘modesty’ in general. According to guideline number 1 of the Dress Code, page 24 in the student handbook, “All tops shall have sleeves and not expose the torso (stomach) or cleavage. Off the shoulder shirts are not appropriate.” While this could make sense if it was equally enforced, it is sadly not. Females are much more likely to be hit with an infraction of the dress code for this than males are, leaving the students to wonder if it’s really even about modesty? Not to mention that, even within females this section is biased! Bigger ladies are more likely to receive an infraction than our thinner ladies for “exposing their midriff.” Huh? Like, come on, if you’re gonna have a dress code, and if you’re going to bias it towards males, then PLEASE at least make it fair for all females. There is no equality in the dress code, and it’s certainly not about modesty. It’s about paperwork. This isn’t even diving into the fact that, despite this rule stated quite clearly in the student handbook, adults in the building have been seen wearing tank tops. Not only are they wearing a tank top, but they are also wearing a tank top on one of the most important pieces of viewing material for the school which most students will watch. So, does the student handbook apply to students only or do teachers have their own dress code rules?

Exhibit C: The dress code for teachers. Believe it or not, teachers also have a dress code. So, props to our amazing teachers for giving up some of their freedom to set a good example for their students. That’s respectable. However, not all are held to the same standards. Once again, if you’re going to have a dress code, at least have a dress code that is fair to all in the building.

Do we think that we should get rid of the dress code? Yeah. absolutely. So long as you’re wearing pants and a shirt and some shoes, it shouldn’t matter what you wear. Is that a realistic goal? ABSOLUTELY not. But at the very least, we could see some change to it, by holding everybody (EVERYBODY) to the same standards, as to build a better environment where all are treated fairly, and are able to express themselves the way they want. Doesn’t that sound nice? Let’s please have that at least.