By Claire Mohar
The students at Newberry High School see the dress code as outdated, and worse yet, it targets female students.
According to Tahquamenon Area School’s student handbook, “Tops with spaghetti straps or straps that are less than two inches in width, bare midriffs, bare backs, necklines that expose any cleavage” and “Skirts, dresses and shorts” above “the lengths that reach fingertips of student” are all violations of the dress code.
These stipulations specifically refer to girl’s clothing. A video shown at the beginning of the year informing new students of what they’re allowed to wear almost exclusively shows images of girls.
It’s not only an issue of the dress code itself, but also how it is enforced. Two separate female students stated that, in gym class, “boys are allowed to wear cut off shirts” that expose their stomachs or chests, while the girls are told to cover up.
The boys, on the other hand, don’t believe they’re given enough credit. As one male student said: “We don’t care if girls show their shoulders. And besides, it gets hot in here, they might need to wear a tank top.” This may have to do with the inadequacy of the school’s heating/cooling system.
Students say it is a much more distracting when a teacher singles out someone in class over their outfit than the individual’s outfit itself. As a student with only five minutes between classes and assignments due, the last thing on your mind is the dress code.
I personally have been late for class because a teacher told me my shorts were above fingertip length and I had to change.
If you don’t have extra clothes with you, some students even have to call parents in order to find “appropriate” clothing.
Students agree that while there should still be limitations to what we wear, we deserve a revamped dress code that’s fairly applied to both genders.
Claire Mohar is in 10th grade at Newberry High School.