Does the Dress Code Discriminate?

It’s the age old debate: the definitive, trendy fashion movement versus the constricting, seemingly antiquated dress code of the school.

What is even more uproarious is the increased scrutiny of female fashion, while the boys run off in their ripped jeans scott-free. However, this notion of a gender-split in the school dress code is absurd and unfounded. 

Rules aside, we cannot ignore the difference in fashion between men and women. These days, boys’ fashion involves a rotation of joggers, shorts, and jeans with long and short sleeve sweatshirts and shirts. At most, any violations involve explicit content printed on shirts or jeans ripped above the knee. Female fashion involves many of the same, and rightly so, as sweatshirts are almost too comfortable, but fashion also involves emphasizing the legs, shoulders and skin in general. It is rather hard to think of a guy strutting around in short-shorts and a tube top, especially knowing how cold the school gets. Not every girl at GHS should be showing as much skin as possible, but modern female fashion tends to lean towards it, and the school dress code has been tailored towards this.

Another argument comes down to basic anatomy. Now, we are all fairly knowledgeable about the birds and the bees; we understand that men and women are built differently. According to Rule 4 of the dress code found in every school planner on Page 22, clothing must cover students’ cleavage. This rule is not sexist. It is simply addressing the differences in students. Never, or at least in extremely rare cases, has a boy had to be concerned about cleavage. Some rules are simply tailored to each gender.

Even with debate over whether or not the rules themselves are sexist, the dress code should be celebrated. Do we need to be reminded of the alternative to the dress code? Every student shudders when they even think of the ghastly word: uniforms. The dress code is more than a constricting set of guidelines: it is an admission of the school’s faith in students. To enjoy our freedom of fashion, we engage in a simple trade: variations in style for variations in rule. As our own trends change, the school changes with them. While the rules can seem unfair at first, it is important to understand that it is because of these restrictions that we are able to have our own styles.

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