School dress code undermines women


If you can’t do your work or pay attention because a girl is wearing a shorter skirt than you’re used to, you should be removed from the situation, not the girl. If a student is distracted, that’s their fault, not that of the person they’re gawking at.

Although this is not always the case, I speak for the majority when I say that if a girl in school is not wearing long pants and a sweatshirt, she’s bound to be a distraction, right?

When administrative figures are giving detention and requiring female students to either cover up or have a parent bring a change of clothes because they were violating dress code, I understand it in a sense. But physically removing them from class or preventing them from going to their next class is ridiculous and uncalled for. I have seen this phenomenon time and time again, as well as going through this myself.

According to the Dress Code here at SHS, “dresses and skirts must be near knee length.” Near? Isn’t that a matter of opinion? Because I could think “near” means three inches above the knee, while someone else could think it’s three below. It’s all subject to change, and that’s not fair to students.

Here’s a little story. During the week before Fall Break of last year, I was stopped on my way into lunch because my skirt was considered too short, even though the hemline was almost touching my knee and if I stood up straight, my fingertips didn’t even come close to the hem. Nonetheless, I went to the office. Long story short, my mom was called, and she had to take time off of work to bring me clothes. Yes, that’s right, she had to take personal vacation time to run by my house and bring me jeans and a shirt because God forbid I show my oh-so-attractive knees. Not to mention, I missed all of lunch and the first half of fifth period.

This, to me, is plain ridiculous. I bet you $50 that I could’ve picked out more than 20 girls with shorter skirts than me, yet I was the one who got sent to the office. Needless to say, I saw zero guys in there for dress code violations.

In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever heard one of my guy friends complain about getting sent down to the office for wearing pants shorter than knee length or having rips and tears in them. On the other hand, my female friends are constantly on edge about it.

One office visit can cost students precious time. Altogether, it was a total of around an hour for me, including half an hour missed of Chemistry. That’s half an hour of education that I lost. That class time was vital, considering the class was studying for an upcoming test.

This, in fact, was in violation of Title IX of the Constitution of the United States of America, which states that “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.” This means that students are not allowed to be discriminated against or be excluded from class based upon gender. Though this title does not directly state anything about clothing or dress code in general, considering the ratio of females to males that receive discrimination based on these subjects, it can still be applied. This insinuates that girls at SHS cannot receive detention or In School Suspension based upon what they wear. If they are given a disciplinary consequence such as these, it is in direct violation of Title IX.

Altogether, it’s not the girl’s fault if they “distract” guys. Girls should be able to wear what they want in school as long as they are comfortable. I understand a dress code needs to be in place for obvious reasons, but that dress code should not be considered “broken” because a girl is a “distraction.” Women are more than distractions, they are human beings. Instead of shaming girls, teach boys that women are not sexual objects.