The Editorial Board
Students took to media to address the newly enforced dress code. Branham administration has been pulling females over for shirts revealing midriff and males for wearing muscle shirts that show a large portion of the chest. A former dress code is posted on the Branham webpage, but most of the rules are not currently enforced.
Female students feel specifically targeted because they face more restrictions that single out their gender. A strict dress code can objectify women by deeming their clothing as distracting. This also undermines men’s maturity levels. From a young age, female students are expected to follow a standard dress code that regulates shorts, sleeves, and necklines. How does one measure raciness?
This is started at an even earlier age when adults imply there is a right way and a wrong way to dress. A look around Branham will reveal a vast variety of body types, so no shirt fits each female the same way. All students should have the right to feel confident in their clothing at school.
Since the dress code appears heavily focused on female students, Ms. Lawton is condsidering a gender neutral dress code. If this was implemented at Branham, transgender and non-binary students wouldn’t have to face the awkward question of which regulations apply to them. School-wide dress code rules would ensure simple and memorable guides that students can actually recall when dressing each morning.
Female students have been quick to mention that administration have monitored midriffs, a body part that most do not deem inappropriate, instead of restricting the length of shorts, amount of cleavage shown, or the width of tank top straps.
Standard regulations are essential in a high school, but the choice of clothing that administration are focusing on is compelling. The dress code is enforced to keep a professional school environment, which students will conform to in their careers. Without a clear set of rules, administration can only hope for students to rely on common sense and make their best judgment in the moment.