6 Advantages and Disadvantages of School Dress Codes
People at times express themselves with the clothes they wear and with school dress code policies, this become challenging at times. Some groups push for school dress codes to become mandatory but others find it biased especially on girls. Are policies like these beneficial or do they only suppress the freedom of students? Let us take a look at some of the benefits and setbacks of regulating what students wear in schools.
List of Advantages of School Dress Codes
1. Girls are less exposed to assault and sexual harassment.
Some girls are fine with having to wear clothes that are not too revealing while some are comfortable wearing shorts and sleeveless dresses or tank tops. Although these two fashion styles are fine, some schools think that if girls are not too conscious about what they wear, they can be victims of sexual harassment and even abuse. With school dress codes, these things can be prevented or at least be mitigated. By putting some limitations on dressing up, boys and girls will be aware of what appropriate clothes to wear.
2. Bullying will be lessened.
There are instances of bullying that stem from students coming from affluent families who look down on their classmates for being in the lower class or belonging to poor families. They target these students who either wear shabby or inexpensive clothes and those who they consider odd or with poor taste by bullying them. With the existence of school dress code policies, bullying can be prevented because there will be rules to follow.
3. Students will be more focuses on academics instead of fashion.
Choosing what to wear on a daily can be a struggle especially if a student knows that her peers wear branded clothes and accessories. Imposing a strict policy on what students should wear can motivate them to focus more on their lessons instead on how they look and what to wear every day. Although this policy does not necessarily include wearing school uniforms, regulating the clothes worn in school can prevent distracting a student from concentrating on his or her studies.
List of Disadvantages of School Dress Codes
1. Some students are uncomfortable with it.
There are people who love dressing up and more comfortable wearing certain clothes with cuts and designs that fit their body build. If school dress codes prevent them from wearing these types of clothing, this might affect their performance in school. Critics of these policies argue that children should be allowed to be in clothes they are comfortable with.
2. School dress code policies can be sexist and discriminatory.
When it comes to imposition of dress codes policies in schools, girls are more often the ones who are put in bad light. They are the ones being restricted especially when it comes to the length of skirts and shorts or even the color of their hair and accessories they wear. On the other hand, boys do not get the same treatment except for the length of their hair or graphics on their shirts. Moreover, girls are the ones being blamed for distracting other students with the clothes they wear. This can be considered as labeling and controlling.
3. Self-expression is denied.
Another disadvantage of having policies on what to wear in school is the suppression of self-expression. With a mandatory dress code in schools, students might not be able to show their individualities.
School dress codes are fine so long as students are given the right to speak their minds and be heard of their views. Before imposing these policies, the student body should have a copy of the regulations so they can discuss these with the school officials.