The CS Press

Debating the dress code

The dress code policies have been part of an on going discussion for a while. The editorial staff discusses changes for Administration and students to reach a compromise

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Debating the dress code

CS Press Editorial, editorial board

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Every girl remembers the first time they were dress-coded by an adult. Being called out for what they are wearing can be both embarrassing and confusing, sending the message that what a girl wears is directly related to how she is treated. For most girls, this sexualized mentality starts at a young age and continues into adulthood. Little things like holes in jeans, spaghetti straps, and not wearing a bra have become the peak of controversy inside schools. In this climate, a woman’s body and choices are given more importance than their education, character, and beliefs. 

According to Change.org, more than 400 petitions have been filed against school dress codes in America, most of them asserting that school dress codes are “sexist or unfairly enforced.” We do not feel that schools should focus on dress code for these reasons and for the loss in learning time that results from students having to change their clothes.

Historically, girls have been  subjected to a stricter dress code than men. During the Puritan era, girls couldn’t show their ankles without risking consequences. Things have changed a lot since then, and women are not restricted in the same way. Even today, we live in a society that judges a women for what she wears.

Many times, girls are dress-coded because their clothing is deemed “distracting” for boys, the idea being that their bodies cause boys to lose concentration. Creating an atmosphere where boys are led to believe that it is acceptable to allow what clothing girls wear to distract them in a learning environment, will never help them mature. Assuming that all boys are distracted by exposed shoulders and girls wearing shorts makes it seem that all boys are incompetent when it comes to controlling their focus and maturity levels, which is untrue. The rules put into effect should help boys mature to men and show those who still might be lacking in maturity that women can wear whatever clothing they want, and that it is up to them to control themselves, not women. 

Of course, there are situations where dress code is completely necessary in order to enforce some sort of regulation for a professional environment. We understand the need for dress codes. What needs to change are the shaming tactics used against young girls. Taking away their class time, making them wear bright, silly shirts, and yelling at them in front of their peers is not the solution. 

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Debating the dress code