Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Principal Suspends 128 For Dress Code Violations

I've read about this story on a couple of edu-blogs, and since it touches on a topic near and dear to my heart, I'll address it here too.

Bracing for the attack of all the peace, love, and tie-dye folks, I'll state categorically:

1. No, high school is not the place for you to demonstrate your individuality. It's the place for you to demonstrate your intellect and conformance to societal norms.

2. Yes, having me see your cleavage (girls) or boxers (boys) is sexual harassment, at least according to my district's sexual harassment policy. Don't tell me not to look--don't show it in the first place.

3. If a school isn't going to enforce the dress code it has, it needs to get rid of it. Mr. Chanman of Buckhorn Road (see blogroll at left) likened this to Giuliani's "broken window" theory--if bad guys see broken windows, they'll know that crime is tolerated in the area, and it goes downhill from there. If you have rules you don't enforce, that breeds contempt for all rules--which ones can I get away with breaking, and why those rules but not these? Enforce all of them, as the principal did in the linked story.

4. I don't care if you like the policy or not. I don't like having to drive 40 mph down Auburn Blvd. when it can easily handle traffic at 55 mph, but I don't have much of an argument if I were to get pulled over. Having the discipline to deal with things you don't like to deal with is a sign of maturity.

I think that's enough points. You get my point, and that was the point of writing this pointed post.

Update: Thanks to commenter mrc for pointing out what may have been a Freudian slip in typing!

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bravo.

Marlex said...

I would like to shake her hand.

mrc said...

Despite having a different general outlook, I really do agree with your pointy post here. Kids get so worked up about dress code at my school and yet it does not seem to stifle their individuality at all -- it just places some limits around what would otherwise be a completely ridiculous situation as you describe. (However, I think you mean tie-dye, not tie-die!)

Chanman said...

Thank you for your turn-around on dealing with the girls, because that is my logical concern: that the girl will say, "Why are you looking at me there in the first place?" Now I have my answer.
In my beginning of the year lesson on rules, I tell my boys not to wear sagging pants because aside from not wanting to look at their boxers, I am also abhorred at the idea of their underwear touching my chairs where other students are going to sit. Yuck!

rightwingprof said...

I agree, although I get annoyed by the dolts who seem to think that instituting dress codes will, all by itself, fix the system. Dress is only a very small part of what's wrong.

ChicagoGreg said...

Glad to see there there are still teachers out there with a sense of decency, and not promoting perversion and ill will.

Mrs. Bluebird said...

As my husband the taxpayer will say, "your kid can dress however they want when they're at home, but when they're at school, they're on my dime, and they better follow the rules and get an education."

And to think, some of us on the team are going to pull one of our little seventh graders and have a "cleavage and low cut top" talk tomorrow.

Darren said...

Mrs. Bluebird, do you anticipate a call from the parents chastising you for your "nazi" rules, and you can't tell my kid how to dress, blah blah blah?

I can't believe parents allow their kids to go to school dressed the way they do. Do they want to be their kids' friends, do they want to be the "cool" parents, do they not see what we teachers see because they're so used to it, or do they just not care?

This is what I don't get. I usually don't shave on weekends, and with the weather still warm, I wear shorts and t-shirts on the weekends. That's me, in my natural environment. I'll go to Costco dressed like that, but I wouldn't think of going to school (work) like that. I think the kids understand this as well as any of us do, they just don't want to comply because, well, they don't want to! At which point I feel compelled to repeat a line from my post:

Having the discipline to deal with things you don't like to deal with is a sign of maturity.

"Ms. Cornelius" said...

1. You saw Jenny Freud's slip, too? I thought I was the only one...

2. I totally believe in the broken windows theory when it comes to in-school titillation-- and yes, I MEANT to put that pun in there.

rightwingprof said...

You know, I have way too much to do and worry about -- like make sure my students LEARN the material -- to worry about their "individuality" or "creativity." I don't give two hoots about their creativity.

Scott McCall said...

hmm....i wonder, if all the teachers at school were to show up in the same outfits as teenagers (low-cut shirts, revealing blouses, baggy pants with boxers showin...etc), i wonder if students would get the point on how freaky it can get at times. just think, if any of the older teachers were to come to school showin off their mid-drifts...some students wouldnt want to wear cloths like that again. or, if the principle was to walk arround with his pants low and boxers showin, boys would wear the pants high. i at least know i would be walking around with my pants so high, id be steve erkle.

MikeAT said...

Scary sight from a few days ago while on patrol…a 20 something man with his ass hanging out from his pants, while he was riding his bike…made me want to puke!

BTY Darren, how do you dress at work? Dockers and an open collar? Shirt and tie? Jeans and a good shirt? Combo there of?

Darren said...

The first couple days of school I wear a tie, but other than that it's an open collar shirt.

Monday through Thursday I wear Dockers-type pants, on Friday I often slip on a pair of (not faded, not raggedy) jeans. Also wear my collared school shirt on Friday.

We have some male teachers who wear what I would consider "summer leisure attire" to work, but I just can't do it.

rightwingprof said...

Business dress casual M-Th (dress slacks, dress shirt and tie, sportcoat, or dress T and sportcoat, and loafers), though I take a perverse pleasure in wearing a suit on Fridays, you know, to counter that casual Fridays thing.

I don't own a single pair of jeans, though I do have a particular fondness for cargo pants, just not the wrinkly ones, and I own no khaki. Hard to find them in black or navy.