Dress Code Equality

Category: Culture
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“While it is important that young, curious students are not arriving to school dressed more maturely than their age (yes, for boys and girls) it is important to pay attention to the sexism against girls within these dress code policies.” cited source. Female students are constantly being put on the spot and brought to attention. They are sometimes even harassed by others about their attire. Students and teachers alike should be more focused on education and learning, rather than wardrobe. Girls are being held to stricter standards, facing sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviors from fellow students, and are being treated unfairly on campus. This is all because school dress codes are not equally enforced to all students.

Females’ choices of clothing are held at a higher standard of judgement on school campuses than males. Since girls have, “more than boys,” they have to cover much more than necessarily needed. It’s not fair that females are constantly having to worry about making sure everything is long enough to fit dress code, even though nothing important is showing. “Females are constantly singled out for their clothing and embarrassed at school even though everything is covered.” cited source. Girls should not be punished for having different body parts because it’s completely out of one’s’ control. Students, no matter the gender, should be allowed to express themselves as long as their clothing is logical and reasonable. Boys are allowed to wear muscle shirts that expose their arms, chest, and back without question. So why can’t girls be allowed to wear tank tops that expose our arms? “‘I’ve never seen a boy called out for his attire even though they also break the rules,’ says Sunseri.” cited source. Boys think they can get away with more than girls because they aren’t dress coded nearly as often. Girls are constantly being brought to attention in a publicly humiliating manor. “Documented cases show female students being chastised by school officials, sent home, or barred from attending events like prom.” cited source. It’s embarrassing enough to be called out, but being forced to change clothes makes one feel shameful of themselves.

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Males can basically do what they want without confrontation. Society waves off their actions saying, “boys will be boys.” Males are not always being held responsible for acting mature. “[I]t seems almost insulting that schools instantly assume that boys lack self-control and pay more attention to a bra strap showing instead of what their teacher is teaching.” cited source. Boys should be worried less about collarbones and shoulders and more about their education. A females” attire should have only affect on herself; not others around her. The way a girl dresses one day should not define who she is overall as a person. “…criticized the dress codes as sexist in that they that they unfairly target girls by body-shaming and blaming them for promoting sexual harassment.” cited source. Distressed jeans showing skin above the knee is not an invitation for inappropriate behavior. Females are more than just a distraction. Girls have feelings and don’t deserve to be treated like an object. “Placing such strong emphasis on young women’s bodies may play a large part in their self-definition, their perceptions of themselves as sexual objects.” cited source. We are all different in our own ways, and dress codes often comes with body shaming.

Although we are all seen as equal, girls have more than boys that needs to be covered. Girls are more distracting than boys. Girls must be respectful of themselves and others at all times. It is important that the girls dress respectfully. “There is nothing inherently wrong with dress codes in schools. They can provide important guidance for the norms students should know about as respectful members of the school community.” cited source. Allowing them to dress inappropriately on campus will reflect back poorly on the school. They’re responsible for dressing how they want to be treated. Students who dress sophisticatedly will be treated so. “There is nothing inherently wrong with asking students to adhere to an established dress code” cited source . We want the students to project a good image of themselves to others. Girls have more to cover than boys do. Differences must be taken into consideration. “According to educators and even some parents, young women’s outfits – their bodies, really – are too distracting for men to be expected to comport themselves with dignity and respect.” cited source. The fact that girls have more to cover means they need to be closely monitored for dress code violations.

Females are both physically and mentally mistreated on campus by dress code. Girls are more than just a distraction. We are not responsible from the action of others. “With rising recognition, the girls realized that they did not appreciate being told, repeatedly, that their bodies were distractions to the school environment and required stringent regulation.” cited source. We should not be the ones who are punished. Students should not have to change themselves in order to please others. Asking a student to change their style of clothing is asking them to change who they are. “And when girls violate dress codes, schools do tend to focus on discipline.” cited source. Students should be allowed to wear clothes that reflect their personalities. When at school, students’ focus should be on learning, not clothing. Female attire has nothing to do with the school’s education “ [A] horde of young girls showed up wearing leggings in protest, holding signs that read, ‘Are my pants lowering your test scores?’” cited source. If a student’s grades are suffering because of another student’s attire, the school obviously has bigger issues to worry about.

Schools nationwide need to take a good look at what is being allowed to happen on campus. Is treating their female students this way really acceptable? Just think, so many of these problems can be solved if schools were to equally enforce dress code on all of its students.

Works cited

  1. D’Anastasio, Cecilia. “Girls Speak Out Against Sexist School Dress Codes.” The Nation, 29
  2. June 2015, www.thenation.com/article/girls-speak-out-against-sexist-school-dress-codes/.
  3. Scaramella, Gina. “School Dress Codes Are Tougher On Girls Than Boys.” News, WGBH, 7
  4. May 2018, www.wgbh.org/news/2017/05/22/local-news/school-dress-codes-are-tougher-girls-boys.
  5. Valenti, Jessica. “Enforcing School Dress Codes Teaches Girls to Be Ashamed, Not ‘Modest’ |
  6. Jessica Valenti.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 21 May 2014,
  7. www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/may/21/school-dress-codes-girls-shame-modesty.
  8. Zhou, Li. “Why School Dress Codes Are Sexist.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 21
  9. Oct. 2015,
  10. www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2015/10/school-dress-codes-are-problematic/410
  11. 962/.
  12. “[title_1].” Peacock Plume,
  13. peacockplume.fr/fashion/issues-debate/double-standard-high-school-dress-code.”
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Dress Code Equality. (2021, Apr 19). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/dress-code-equality/