Dress Code = Unfair Code

Dress code is something that every school has and many students have a strong opinion/thoughts about it.


Photo by Kelsey Swain

Dress Code is unfair in schools. Should the rules change?

Kelsey Swain, Staff Writer

Muscle shirts with huge arm holes? Apparently fine, but a sports bra? Absolutely not. A crop top? You can probably get away with it, but a blanket over your shoulders on a cold day in the courtyard? Dream on.

Dress code is something that everyone knows about and many students dislike. Creativity, expression, and liberty in general are stifled by oppressive and discriminatory dress codes that sexualize female bodies and take kids out of the learning environment for “discipline.” School officials should worry less about the dress code and focus more on encouraging learning and true behavioral concerns.

Perhaps the biggest issue with the dress code is the unfair and unequal way it is enforced. Some teachers and other school officials target girls with certain body types more than other students.

“It’s unfair mainly to girls,” said sophomore Eve Feldman. “Because if they wanna wear something that’s just a little tighter than usual, they’ll probably get dressed coded because it’s ‘distracting’ everyone else.” 

I remember in elementary school and middle school that girls’ tank top straps had to be three fingers wide and that your shorts had to be past your middle finger when you stood up straight and your arms by your side.

Everyone is different. Everyone’s arms are different lengths. Everyone’s fingers are different sizes. That rule is not fair. For me, I have really long arms. If I followed that rule, my shorts might as well be pants, but for someone else, they might have short arms so they can wear short shorts. 

Are favorites a thing with dress code? It sure does feel like it. 

Last semester my friend had brought a blanket to school because it was cold outside. She saw a person in front of her with a blanket on and a staff member in the hall said nothing to them, but when she walked by the same staff member, they grabbed her and told her to take it off and put it in her bag. That feels like favoritism to me.  

“I was wearing [a shirt], like all it was doing was showing my stomach. I even had a jacket on,” said freshmen Kaitlyn Tysinger. “And they were like, ‘Can you please put more clothes on,’ but then I saw someone else, and they didn’t have a jacket on, and they were showing shoulders and like almost everything that they had, and I’m the one that got dress coded, and they didn’t.”

It seems like the good kids don’t get in trouble, but you better watch out if you’ve made one mistake in your school life. The teachers are coming for you; watch out. 

Last year the dress code changed. Yep, you heard me right, it changed. Oh, but don’t get too happy, it went right back to what it was. It only lasted one month. Hats and hoods were brought into the school world by the school board: everyone seemed happy and excited about it, but in the end the policy was reversed. It left students mad and disappointed. 

“I think it was wrong when they gave the ability to wear hats in school and shortly took it away,” said junior Lexi Long. “If they didn’t want people to wear hats, then they shouldn’t have given that privilege in the first place.”

Many people were mad when it got taken away and many of the teenagers hope that one day the privilege will be given back to us. That our kids will have the privilege that we never got to have. 

In the end, the dress code is very unfair and something should be done about it. Whether they make it less strict or less sexist, something needs to change. I feel like it’s going to get out of hand in the upcoming years if something is not done about it. Will a student seek change or will the staff? Only time will tell, but let’s make a change.

“I don’t really think there’s a point in dress code,” said senior Jariya Morgan. “People are going to wear what they wanna wear at the end of the day.”


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