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SHOULDERING THE BURDEN OF DRESS CODE

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SHOULDERING THE BURDEN OF DRESS CODE

For many female students, the

For many female students, the "no-shoulders" rule feels outdated and unfair.

Jennifer Schmid

For many female students, the "no-shoulders" rule feels outdated and unfair.

Jennifer Schmid

Jennifer Schmid

For many female students, the "no-shoulders" rule feels outdated and unfair.

Kierstin Phillips, Photographer

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From kindergarten to senior year, the dress code is always one of the more controversial aspects of public education; while some teachers are not as strict about enforcing it, others religiously follow it. However, the biggest burden of dress code falls on female students — ironically, on their shoulders. This leads some to wonder: is the shoulder rule unfair and objectifying students?

The dress code has been an ongoing battle between casual and professional. Many believe that it makes sense to come to school as if it were a workplace environment to prepare for the future. At the same time, the rules against shoulders can be an inconvenience, specifically during warmer months. Florida is known for its heat and there are many students who eat outside in the sun since the cafeteria is so crowded, making them suffer the most from the no-shoulders rule.  

“[The dress code] feels really unfair sometimes, especially when the weather is too hot to wear anything other than a tank top,” said junior Isabelle Lehr.

It is not just the no-shoulders rule that has caused complaints, but also the rule regarding shorts. 

“I believe the dress code has the potential to be beneficial, however the code on shorts should be eradicated,” said junior Summer Noon.

While the heat is certainly bothersome, the no-shoulders rule poses the bigger problem of promoting the objectification of young female students. By teaching girls that they need to cover their shoulders, we suggest that their shoulders would otherwise distract their male peers. This unnecessarily places the blame on the female for “distracting” their male counterparts instead of teaching boys to control themselves.

There is also the subject that the dress code is more strict on girls than boys. Girls are more likely to get stopped for dress code and to be required to change. Boys, however, are rarely ever seen getting dress coded.

“If I can’t wear a tube top, but a guy can wear a [picture of] a naked girl, I want the guy to also get dress code,” said junior Stephanie Ramirez.

The dress code is not only a pain for Florida heat, but ultimately results in the objectification of female students. Girls should not be taught that their bodies are an inconvenience to their male peers attention spans.

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