Student Dresscode – Editorial


Seniors Ava Reyes and Derek Torres demonstrate practice of dress code | Photo by Mia Perez

Mia Perez, Editorial

In 2017, a student by the name of Reagan Marlar expressed a grievance to the editor of the year’s paper claiming, “Throughout my four years of high school, I have had a strong problem regarding the dress code. I believe that even though I am graduating, the students below me would like to see a change.”

In 2022, as the current editor of the newspaper and a senior myself, I would like to address this issue to be a disservice and insult to the student body. 

When the school board makes the assertion that dress code will prepare students for the uniform and restriction of self expression they will be expected to cooperate with in the “real world”, it strictly imposes the premise that students must be dressed professionally to achieve personal success and be taken seriously – sending the implication that clothing defines a student’s potential and disregarding the many career pathways a student may choose and the different levels of formality they will require. In fact, seeing as the majority of dress code rules target feminine style clothing such as skirts, crop tops, and off-the-shoulders, it is not off-base to assume these restrictions are less about keeping the student body focused and more about possessing control.

When a student is pulled from class, dragged away from passing periods, or asked to grab a jacket from her car, she is being taught that her appearance and display of something as trivial as the bottom of her thigh is worth the disruption of her class time. She is being treated as an issue that needs to be corrected – a victim of a cycle fueled and rooted in the issue of female over-sexualization. After years of stressing the importance of taking responsibility and practicing self-management, one would think the school board, and CCISD staff alike, would look to a claim that clothing is a proper excuse for distraction as discreditable. In the “real world”, students will need to learn how to work in “distracting” environments.

This is not to mention, the dress code lacks solid consistency. Where students in cheer are allowed to wear uniform on game days, students volleyball are not. Even when substituting short spandex and knee pads for tights, volleyball students are labeled, yet again, as a distraction. Whenever the same is said about the cheer squad, however, which wears skirts shorter than policy, it is simply deemed as a demonstration of school pride. So what exactly constitutes a violation of school dress code? Is breaking dress code only valid when school spirit comes into play, and if so, does this mean cheer and football are more defensible organizations than volleyball? While it may be far from the school’s original intent of a dress code, it is evident that certain genders, styles and organizations are receiving different treatment and punishment on the warrant of dress code.

There is no doubt the priority of our educational system has been to promote and encourage growth in student confidence as it has so persistently dedicated time and service to the student body through countless student-benefiting clubs, organizations, programs and extracurricular. However, there is always room to adjust and improve. The school district should reconsider treating feminine clothing or sports uniform as taboo in order to provide an increasingly gratifying, equitable and comfortable high school experience for all of the student body.