Dress code is detached from reality

Ashton Lewandowski, Staff Writer

The dress code overall is a bit too severe. Even during homecoming week, where the dress code is not really enforced, it is still too strict. It has a twisted sense of reality, and has recently come under fire for its oppressive nature.

How are students supposed to express themselves when basic types of clothing are forbidden?

— Staff Writer Ashton Lewandowski

I have nothing against the majority of the dress code, but recently, the school, through the yearly homecoming week, encouraged students and teachers to dress up and express themselves. However, I saw students get yelled at for partaking in dressing up during the week’s many themes for wearing even simple, normal articles of clothing. How are students supposed to express themselves when basic types of clothing are forbidden? 

Hats and other head coverings like hoodies are not allowed. People have worn hats for literally thousands of years, and hoodies are even built into other pieces of clothing, but still students do not have the right to put head coverings on during school. It is as normal as someone wearing a shirt or pants, and some religions even promote wearing head coverings. As long as it is not outlandish and distracting, just like every other article of clothing students wear, I do not see why it would be a problem.

Glasses too, are not allowed, unless for a medical reason. When you have a religious or medical right to do something, everyone else should have that right too. First Amendment or medical exemptions should be used to counter arbitrary and authoritarian rule policies. There’s zero reason why only some people can wear glasses, but others cannot. Just because someone has a disability does not mean they should get extra privileges over everyone else.

It took a whole pandemic in order for students to gain the right to wear a face covering to school. The school concedes any counter point they may make about ensuring a safe school environment with the dress code when they have mandated mask wearing for the past two years, with no clear way to easily identify students. 

It is not rational how both teachers and students can hide their identity by wearing a face covering, but other, much less dangerous types of clothing, are still banned. You can hide who you are, but you cannot wear a baseball cap to support your favorite sports team. How are we allowed to cover our faces and hide our identity but not our head? It does not make sense. 

The dress code wants to establish and enforce an opinionated status quo, what the school views as normal, and keep out anything they do not think fits their perception of normal. They worry giving more lenience with the dress code would disrupt the learning environment. The problem with this though is that their sense of normal is far from what students view from normal, as evidenced by the outrage and controversy the dress code has been generating from the student base.

If clothing or otherwise does disrupt the learning environment in any way, I am all for banning it from our school. But in most cases, the dress code is overreaching and a serious discussion needs to form in order for it to be updated.