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  • Writer's pictureThe Eagle

The New Dress Code: Made for All, Enforced for Few

Students are having to use duct tape to cover "distracting" areas of skin, which can cause irritation to the skin when removed and damage clothes. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

By Vivien Mitchell--Eagle Staff Writer

When one thinks of a school day, students coming together to learn and prepare for their future careers comes to mind, never the picture of administrators pulling students out of class to complain about their outfits. However, this has become a reality for Eagles.

School should be about learning and creating a community. Instead, students are getting called out of class to have duct tape cover “inappropriate areas of skin” such as the upper leg, shoulders, and torso. The Franklin County School Board has decided to implement a more stringent dress code, with no regard for students’ opinions.

I, and a majority of the student body, detest the dress code. It is extremely biased towards certain groups and far too strict for others. Teenagers use fashion to express themselves, and for many people getting dressed is a creative outlet, that is now being taken away.

“I completely disagree with the dress code,” Alexis Spade, junior and Varsity cheerleader, commented. “I don’t think it’s fair, and I think it’s really biased. [However,] I agree that we can’t have big coats in the classroom.”

Spade has experienced first-hand the unfairness and discomfort of being dress coded.

“I got pulled out of class because my jeans were not appropriate,” she shared. “I missed a bunch of notes and had to make them up later which then makes me miss whatever activity we were doing by making up the notes.”

Recently, select teachers have made checking for dress code a part of their daily agenda besides “afternoon meeting” and “English test today.”

“Now some teachers are making people stand up and lift their arms and that makes me extremely uncomfortable,” Spade added. “I think that’s gross.”

This brings me to another point, dress code takes away from class time. If students are being pulled out of their class and told to either change or use duct tape (which causes skin irritation) to fix their outfits, they are inevitably going to miss things in class. Also, I believe that pulling students out of class is more distracting than the “inappropriate clothing” they are being dress coded for.

A male student being held to a lower standard in regard to dresscode. (Photo by Vivien Mitchell)

Similar to Spade, there are parts of the dress code that I do support. I agree that shorts should be longer than zero to four inches and that shirts should cover the entire chest and mid-torso, but no one is offended by a belly button, we all have them.

On the other hand, I do not agree that spaghetti straps and ripped jeans should be deemed inappropriate. As they can be more uncomfortable for students to wear than simply for others to see.

“When I walk past a male teacher and Im wearing a crop top they’re just staring at me, I feel like it [dress code] makes people uncomfortable, and it shouldn’t.” Sophomore Addison Angle commented.

From the opposite perspective, dress coding is also unpleasant for male teachers.

“Yes. As a male teacher it does make it very uncomfortable when I have to dress code a female student,” an anonymous source said. “It’s not something I would ever do personally, however, if it came down to it, I would have a female teacher address it.”

As seen, both students and staff have found issues and discomfort with the dress code. Recently, the student representatives for the Franklin County school board, seniors Marianne Alcorn and Ian England, have voiced some of these concerns, but in order for change to be made, more of us need to band together and make our voices heard.

Now, I’m not saying go out and disobey the dress code purposefully, however, attend school board meetings, and if you’re able, to speak at them. This is our school, these rules are made for us, so they should properly serve us.

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