Recently on TikTok, a mom on the app who goes by Stasia opened up a conversation about school dress codes and respecting administration. In the now-viral video, the user explains that she supports her daughter’s choice to walk out of school after being dress-coded. She captions the video as you might not have seen by saying “shoulders, midriffs, and legs aren’t the problem. Talk to the boys/men who claim it’s distracting.” In a follow-up video, she says that her daughter created a protest against the dress code, where she and fellow students wore white tank tops with messages on them to bring attention to how to dress coding students can affect them.
Although some said dress codes are fair to all students and do not usually single girls out only, Stasia says that boys in her class joined in this too, and while many of the girls wearing tank tops were dress coded, none of the boys were. In addition, some girls were allegedly dress coded a second time after the extra-large shirts they were given to remedy the violation COVERED their shorts, which is also against the rules. In a world where children go to school and must wonder about contracting COVID-19 or fearing there will be a school shooting, some wonder if focusing on dress codes might be a little outdated. Although one study conducted reports a “positive correlation between stricter dress codes and academic achievements, others have found no correlation between the two. In addition, their researchers warn of the chances of limiting students’ freedom of expression.”
So, although many agree a minimal dress code should be enforced, many recount that the stricter dress code often singles out girls, which can lead to feelings of shame or embarrassment. Of course, after posting a viral video like this, the user’s comments are flooded with mixed opinions. Although some were in support of her daughter and happy to see a supportive mother, others thought that she was teaching her daughter to be “disrespectful.” But, as expected, not everyone agreed or saw the big deal when it came to dress codes. One person pointed out that dress codes are necessary for not only school but jobs will often have required dress codes as well.
“I don’t get complaining about dress codes. Most jobs I’ve had have dress codes. Lots of places have dress codes,” one commenter said. One TikTok user responded and tried to explain that the dress code becomes an issue when it only picks on girls or makes them feel like they are a “distraction” to boys’ education, writing “sir, respectfully, you’ll never understand how much more strict schools are on young GIRLS when it comes to dress codes. Overall, the topic of dress codes remains controversial, as most agree that some form of dress code should be enforced, but opinions vary when it comes to the levels of strictness when it comes to certain rules.