Essay On School Dress Codes

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The Harms of School Dress Codes
Dress codes in schools have been implemented for some time now. While dress codes are primarily put in place to secure an effective learning environment, they subject students to many detrimental effects. Noelle Swan stated, “There’s a reason that this conversation is so difficult; it involves issues of self image, freedom of expression, and gender politics all wrapped up in an argument,” (Swan).

Dress codes receive opposition for many reasons, one being that they take any basic rights of expression. American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) President Nadine Strossen acknowledged, “The harms [of dress codes] are many. From a free speech point of view, they prevent students from expressing themselves, either directly, such as through a tee shirt that contains a message or indirectly, by conveying attitudes through apparel,” (Rep. 10). For adolescents, their high school years are when they find themselves. Truly finding one’s identity is a difficult task and only made harder when everything is regulated. Removing an important part of self-expression, style of dress, amounts to negative effects. A junior at Stamford High, Michael Bowies exclaimed that, “by telling us [the students] what we can wear, they are taking away our diversity as people and cultures,” (Pardon).
As early as (and most
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This was against the school dress code. She was forced to wear a “shame suit” that consisted of brightly colored garments both clearly showcasing the words “DRESS CODE VIOLATION” (Oliver). When teachers or other faculty members remove students from their classroom to address dress code infringement, they most often do so without sensitivity. Alexi Halket believes “school dress codes teach female students that their bodies are a problem and they have to cover up. They should really be teaching acceptance and body positivity, and also human rights,”

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