School dress codes — no student generally likes being told what to wear. Whether they’re in uniform or not, everyone likes to have their own style.
But a line has to be drawn somewhere, right? If schools didn’t have “what not to wear” policies, things could get a little out of hand.
Obviously, weapons are off limits. And you can’t go to school in the nude. Some dress codes are more strict than others, of course.
I, for example, grew up with teachers who walked around with rulers, measuring our sleeveless tops and the length of our Bermuda shorts.
The question remains: What makes sense when it comes to enforcing dress code policies, and when have teachers and staff gone too far?
One mother in Ogden, Utah, is speaking out after her 13-year-old daughter was “coded” for an image that was on her sweatshirt.
According to Fox 13, Katie Fabert’s daughter attends South Ogden Junior High. The 13-year-old is said to love Marilyn Monroe and often wears clothing featuring the actress.
But one day, Fabert’s daughter came home wearing something other than what she left the house in. Someone on staff made her change her sweatshirt and wear a school shirt instead.
The clothing item in question features a photo of Monroe with rapper Tupac Shakur. Monroe’s top hangs off one shoulder in the image.
While the junior high student’s body was covered according to school policy, it seems her sweatshirt crossed a line — at least, according to the employee who made her change.
When the confused mother asked the school’s vice principal about the incident, she was met with an even more confusing answer.
“He just said, ‘If Marilyn Monroe on the shirt isn’t in South (Ogden Junior High’s) dress code, then the shirt isn’t in South’s dress code,'” Fabert told Fox 13.
So what exactly is South Ogden’s dress code policy? According to the school’s website, “Shirts and tops may not have bare midriffs or be revealing at the neck, stomach and/or arm holes.”
A sweatshirt is hardly revealing, so no problem there. However, the policy also mentions “clothing with designs … that are suggestive.”
The policy goes into detail regarding designs or language that is “obscene” or “promotes violence” or drug use.
One could take the stance that the picture of Monroe’s exposed shoulder is “suggestive.” She was and still is considered the “sex symbol” of her time.
But to say an image on a young girl’s sweatshirt violates a dress could be considered pushing it. After a confrontation with the school’s vice principal, which Fabert told Fox 13 was “unprofessional,” the principal reportedly said the sweatshirt didn’t violate the dress code after all.
“Instead of enforcing what is actually dress code, these teachers are coming in and bringing their own opinion,” Fabert said.
The principal is reportedly reviewing with the staff what does and does not violate the dress code. It has not yet been determined if Fabert’s daughter will be allowed to wear the sweatshirt to school again.
What do you think? Does the image violate the school’s policy, or did the employee go too far in this instance?
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