When this plague and pandemic comes to a close, I want to remind everybody that schools will become an issue. If you recently lost your job and are working in the gig economy, and you want a world class education for your youngster, there are things you should know. Here’s two parts to this post: one, a dress code I would recommend for all schools to follow, and two, what to do if your dress code promotes rape culture and silences the expressions of women and girls, so sit back and fasten your seatbelts because this will be important.
How should a dress code be worded?
Dress codes. are important hallmarks of school pride and spirit, but uniforms can be a problematic thing. Catholic schools like St. Teresa when I was a student had a dress code that was gender exclusive. For example, girls had to wear pinafore jumpers and skirts depending on grade level. Only the kindergarten classes and prekindergarten class had equally good uniforms for boys and girls. Once you hit grade 1, first grade, however, the girls are separate in dress and manner and code than the boys. There are strict rules about boys and jewelry, but the girls are the ones who pay the price. Skirts are fine sometimes, but during NUT days, otherwise known as “no uniform today” days, the principals and vice principal would say that girls should wear these hundred items, but not wear these thousand others. Boys’ hair must be cut really short, above the ear, and brands on shoes are a problematic thing too. STS recommended that we wear Oxford dress shoes to church and so on, but Oxford brands are expensive. The regular shoes we wear should not have a brand bigger than a quarter on them, but to have such a picky dress code on shoes is remarkably taxing on parents who can’t find or can’t afford what students need. This is information from my years at STS, and does not possibly apply today, but if someone knows what the STS dress code is like today, I’d love to know via Twitter or Facebook if you know anything about any changes other than the girls got pants for the winter. That’s another thing.
While girls are expected to wear pinafore jumpers or skirts to church every Friday, boys have pants. The only exception to the girls wearing skirts or pants thing to church is during wintertime. That made sense, but skirts don’t automatically identify all girls, but this school is like all Catholic schools in that they try to make boys men and girls women. The underlying gender role messages in the STS dress code speak exclusivity to nonconformists, so a Catholic school is not the recommended choice for parents of child nonconformists like those who are transgender etc.
When I went to high school, I believed that I was fine with dress, and to this day I dress a bit conservatively if I go anywhere. However, my idea of a dress code should be the following: All students should wear proper clothing, business casual, and girls can choose to wear what they want based on how they feel. Yes, people might think this is crazy and that girls’ bodies overtly distract boys’ sexual urges, but shouldn’t we teach boys that girls are to be worshipped and respected, not looked upon as sexual objects? Yes, sex is a good thing, but for high school boys who have urges like this and other problems, there should be sex ed to be done for them and the girls alike. Boys have the responsibility to be good stewards and stand up for girls’ rights, especially as it pertains to dress and demeanor. I have the right to wear a short skirt, no veils, no hats, no wigs, and I have a right to wear a nice blouse. I also have the right to practice what I want, wear a pentacle or perhaps a star and crescent or whatever symbol I have in my religious toolbox. I have the right, and it’s up to boys to practice restraint, not get on their high horses and silence girls, and not distract themselves. It’s the boy’s fault if a daughter or female or trans male to female gets attacked, not the victim themselves.
What is there wrong with dress codes in schools? A lot. Here’s what to look for in a potential candidate for your student’s school.
- If the boys have more freedom than the girls, when it comes to dress that shouldn’t be happening.
- If a girl is told not to wear a certain makeup, but nothing is said of boys and concealer, then that’s a red flag.
- If a strict policy on how long a girl’s skirt should be, that’s also a red flag.
- If a girl is given more strict controls on what kind of T-shirt the school accepts, and if she can’t wear shirts that express feminine principles such as the infamous “I heart boobies” shirt or bracelets, that’s also a red flag.
- If girls and boys have their own separate dress codes period, then there should be a talk with the principle writers of the code. Here are a few questions you should ask.
What should I do if my daughter is attacked? If the answer is a victim blaming “Then she should have worn a more conservative outfit”, then pull her out of the school or address the school board.
What is your policy on transgender students and their dress and identity and such? If the answer doesn’t satisfy you the parent, pull them out and address this with your government or school board.
Why are you more strict with girls than boys in your dress code? I wouldn’t recommend the why questions, but dress codes must be justified, and if the principal and school governing body says that girls’ bodies are a distraction, then here’s the next question.
Do you teach boys about the concept of restraint and respect for women and consent? Get a copy of the school’s health class textbook, the student edition, and read through it cover to cover. While you might think you don’t have time, this textbook might offer a glimpse into the school’s and the state’s view of women and girls’ sexuality and boys’ ability to respect women. Look at the purity lessons taught in some schools, and if you are able, get a copy of the health teacher’s lesson plans. If there’s something in that lesson plan that doesn’t satisfy you as a parent or makes you uncomfortable, something like the objectification lessons in some health classes dealing with abstinence only until marriage, speak promptly with the teacher in charge. You need to be proactive in explaining why you don’t feel comfortable with objectification lessons for your daughter or nonconforming child. If your child or teen was assigned male at birth, and is transitioning, you should consider this information a wakeup call and think about moving states and districts. Denver is a gender friendly place, and DPS has a special way of dealing with kids who are disabled or experience bullying. Above all, I’d like to say that a place like Denver public schools may be a good place to send transgender students who can’t fit in at a normal country school. Southern schools in places like Kentucky and Florida insist on abstinence and marriage ed for even their blind students, but let me say that marriage ed has flaws in it. Not every disabled female will marry, and most disabled men won’t. Please check out the MGTOW video I shared and it’s on YouTube, but it tells a lot about divorce and the problems plaguing blind men, and most of them encounter hypergamy, which is dangerous for all humanity.
What to do if your child experiences a dress code violation:
Make sure that you read the explicit note from the teacher or vice principal about your child’s dress code violation. It’s not like you’d send your youngsters to school in their birthday suit, so take a look at the specific violation. If you see a violation that doesn’t add up, call your school principal, and if they don’t respond, your school board president or a representative. For example, THS has been under the jurisdiction of the Brevard County School Board, but if you send your high schooler to Melbourne Central Catholic, you might want to contact your diocese, likely Orlando, and say you’re pulling out because like it or not, your child’s best interest should come first. IF it’s a school that has a charter, contact your local school board and the company responsible for the school’s charter, and suggest a meeting with these people. Here’s a script for said meeting should this occur.
Parent script for meeting with school officials and school board regarding student dress codes and violations:
Hello, my name is (insert your name here) and I am a parent of a child at your school. My child was sent home with a dress code violation that doesn’t add up, please explain why. Also, I’m considering my options for pulling my child from the school because (choose the following from the list below)
- My child is transgender and doesn’t conform to the standards set forth by societal gender expectations.
- My child is of a differing religion than other classmates, and should be considered when making rules about symbols for that religion. (insert name of religion here)
- My child is poor and we can’t afford the brands of shoes and clothes you and the classmates are wearing.
- We parents of this child are overwrought with work and can’t afford to pick our child up for this violation.
If you are using the script, pick any of the list items I just put here, and I hope this helps you navigate the rape culture that exists in schools like your local high school.
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