Undressing Dress Codes

Hello readers!

So this is my first post on this blog and I am very excited to discuss a fairly problematic subject for a high-schooler at the moment. I have never opposed dress codes and I completely understand why schools would have them, but I think there are a lot of injustices in the system nowadays. First off, girls are mainly the victims of these “dress code violations” at school. Just saying you don’t see a lot of guys being called out for running around shirtless or anything, so why are girls being targeted for not dressing to code?

This leads me to point #2. Students (majority females) are being discriminated against because of their body type, and a lot of the reasons they can’t even CHANGE! For example, if you are taller you might be called out for wearing shorts that are too short when really they just look smaller than someone who has shorter legs. Another example is if someone is wearing clothing that is “up to code” but has a more curved body type they would more likely be in trouble for dressing inappropriately compared to someone who has a slimmer figure. None of this is to be ashamed of at all, and isn’t that what school has been teaching us this whole time? To not bully each other and to love ourselves? Then why do school staff suddenly pick on the girl down the hall who is wearing a normal top, saying that she needs to cover up because she has larger breasts or curvier hips? Or even, in some instances, because of the color of their skin?

Point # 3 is about one very popular excuse that schools use to justify their sexist and discriminatory ways, which is this: boys being distracted. So basically I have heard on several accounts that girls have been asked to “dress more appropriately” because the male students are distracted by [the girl’s] bodies and need to focus on their work. This is complete BS because 1) I personally have more faith in a large majority of guys to not be completely distracted from what they are learning because of what ONE GIRL is wearing; 2) Even if guys are distracted isn’t that their problem? I think I can speak for many teenage girls when I say I do not want to have to wear a sweater in a hot, stuffy school because some guys are starring at me; and finally 3) Why aren’t boys told to cover up when they are outside playing soccer or basketball or even ultimate frisbee? Guys are not the only ones that can be distracted because of sexual urges, so why are girls always the ones being penalized? I honestly think that we should have a little more faith in men and their ability to control their desires, but if we can’t then we should at least accept the fact that women can also have sexual urges and be distracted by said feelings.

Despite my personal views on dress codes, I completely understand why there would be dress codes employed in schools. I would just rather have these rules be enforced equally despite gender, ethnicity, sexuality, or body type. I also want to address the fact that opinions surrounding dress codes may be different in other schools or communities and these are just my personal experiences and responses.

Until next time,

Marin S.

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