Today, schools all around the world are allowed to create and enforce dress code programs within their districts. According to Dictionary.com dress code is “a set of rules, usually written and posted, specifying the required manner of dress at a school, office, club, restaurant, etc.” By doing so they are enforcing a safe and disciplined school environment and preventing interference with school work. Though, many students may think otherwise since they are being told what is the correct thing to wear and not to wear.
Many students do not understand the reasoning towards dress code which is why many of them still do not follow dress code rules. It is hard considering that this is the stage in life which many young adults do not like to be told what to do. They also tend to interest political interests that can be very disturbing to others which is where the dress code enforcement is enforced. In the society we live in today there are many students who express themselves through their clothing. Therefore, the fact that many students are not able to wear certain outfits they fill may “express them” as a person limits them from showing who they really are.
Though many teenagers, young woman in this case often tend to show more skin and wear less clothing. Which is in fact distracting not only for school officials but along with students. The district wants to be precautions to remain a settled, uniformed school, since it is a learning community. When dressing for schools students tend to dress to impress. There are many districts who band short shorts, tank tops, tube tops, etc. It is hard since many people have different notions of what is appropriate and what is not.
This is the reasoning of why they set a standardized dress code in which everyone is enforced to follow. However, students understand when they are dressing inappropriate but still go on disobeying the dress code, this is why staff extends the consequences of violating the dress code. For example, if a student gets dress coded by a staff they are automatically forced to change their outfits which a new one is provided by the school. According to a survey from Lands’ End found that “the number of public schools with a dress code increased by 21 percent from 2000 to 2013.
” There are many pros and cons when it comes to dress codes. Many can say that it will promote better behavior in students, gives self discipline and less distractions from students so they are able to concentrate. On the other hand, many can argue that it may prevent creative expressions from students, dress code suspensions can lead into less focus in school and can be costly due to the dress code. Although, many students will question why schools enforce dress codes. It all began when the first school dress code law was established in 1969 by the US Supreme Court. The well known case known as Tinker versus Des Moines Independent school district, where high school students who wore black armbands to school to protest against the Vietnam war. Though in this case, the staff automatically assumed that the students were protesting rather then asking for the purpose towards the black armbands.
When they refused to take off the armbands there consequence was suspension. Through the parents the students then sued the school for violating there freedom of expression. Though not only was their freedom of expression violated their 1st amendment freedom of speech was also violated. According to the first amendment “the first amendment protects the people’s rights of freedom of speech without involvement of the government.” This case created the supreme court to question symbolic speech. The Tinker siblings did not directly state that they were objected to the war though they used their arm bands. Since they did not use verbal explanation this is not considered a direct protest.
A student can still express their opinion as long as it does not affect others. This came to prove that the Tinker siblings rights were violated. This suggested that schools may limit students expression, which is known as dress code. If any expression would disturb a learning environment or rights of others then it is considered prohibited. However, the court also made the decision that “the problem posed by the present case does not relate to regulation of the length of skirts ot the type of clothing, to hairstyle, to hair or department.” Although, many may say that their first amendment is being violated when they are dress coded due to this case there is an extent of what type of piece of clothing you are able to wear. This is the reasoning why more schools are turning to dress codes and uniforms as a way to discipline students and school safety.
In addition, if students clothing draws attention away from the school learning environment it is not allowed. There are restrictions on gang related clothing often described as “oversize clothing and other clothing meant to show affiliation with a certain group”. They ban themed T-shirts such as Marilyn Manson T-shirts. If you were in a uniformed policy then school colors have to be worn along with black or Khaki pants. Also, there are limits on the length of a skirt or shirt. Along with a representation of lewd, sexually explicit, or indecent drug use. As for girls, midriffs and lower backs are not being exposed. Although there are limitations to what you can wear, it cannot be used to prevent students from expressing the religious believes.
Both the Constitution and state laws protect students rights to wear religious attire in school. Such as wearing a turban, yarmulkes, or head scarfs. For example, many still ban cross necklaces, wearing traditional dresses or rosaries. As long as it is used for purposes of religion it is acceptable. Anything otherwise is prohibited. Thus you can wear clothing that communicates a political or religious message.
According to the Tinker versus Des Moines Case, the most well-known student rights case in which they addressed a constitutional right. Since then, quarts have allowed students to express their political view through clothing. For example, when a piece of clothing that is colorful, supporting opposite genders or criticizing a politician is acceptable. Anything otherwise, such as absent or in dissent messages that may cause disruption can be prohibited. Overall, the reasoning towards dress code has made a change in school districts. Which is why over the decade many more schools are starting to enforce uniform policy dress codes.
In doing so, not only will they enforce a uniformed school but it will be easier for not just anyone to walk in the school not wearing uniform and prevent any incident from happening before hand. Regardless of what many students have negative to say towards it school officials do it for a safety reason. As staff being adults they understand what students can not and believe the reasoning of dress codes is a valid enough reason. Dress codes mainly touch the subject of the length of clothing and anything that can began a disagreement against other peers. Schools districts main goal is to keep a persistent learning environment in which everyone feels safe in. It is hard when students tend to go against certain rules they set and do what they want. There are limitations to what type of brands, themed shirts, and sayings on shirts only because they are put into a learning environment and schools want to prevent any disagreement from students that may cause a ruckus. This is the only reasoning why schools limit students from wearing their political views.
Otherwise, you are allowed to wear what you desire. According to the Guardian “As long as students come appropriately dressed, clothing isn’t a major factor in their learning. I believe in treating children as individuals with rights and responsibilities.” this quotation shows that a piece of clothing should not affect the way students learn. School is a learning community not where one should judge what someone else wears.
It is only 6 hours of there life that they have to be under a dress code policy. Outside school boundaries they have a desire of what the want to wear.