Dress Code . . . Yes or No?

By Olivia Scaglione

As winter has drawn to a close, warm weather is (hopefully!) fast approaching and as is the discussion of a controversial topic in many schools around the nation: whether students should be required to follow a dress code.

When speaking to several students at the high school, most agreed that students should be able to wear the clothing they want. Freshman Gabriella Gentile felt very strongly about this topic and said,“I want to wear my own clothes and be able to wear what I want throughout my high school years.” She also added that students should be able to express themselves through their clothing.

Another student, freshman Emma Trembone, agreed that students should be able to express themselves, but that there should be limitations. Emma explained, “students should be able to express themselves but to a certain extent. I do not think students should be able to wear really short shorts or crop tops.” Emma also thinks that a school is a place where students come to learn and should not be distracted by another student’s clothing.

Likewise, teachers also agree that students should choose their own clothing but with boundaries. Physical education teacher, Mrs. Healy, says that in general, she doesn’t have a problem with students clothing unless a student is wearing something inappropriate or revealing.

Daniella Monteforte, a former Byram Hills student, now attends Ursuline High School where she is required to wear a uniform, consisting of a sweater and a skirt. She has said that she likes her new schools dress code and said, “I don’t have to worry about what to wear every morning. It takes only fifteen minutes off my morning routine [therefore] I can sleep later.” Daniella adds that students at Ursuline feel less judgment because everyone is dressed the same. Daniella says that a few times a year her school has “dress down days.” This is where students can dress however they want for one day. Ursuline appears to have the best of both worlds- student being able to express themselves through clothing while still implementing a strict dress code.

According to the Byram Hills Code of Conduct, students should not wear clothing that is revealing and “students and their parents have the primary responsibility for acceptable student dress and appearance.” The Code of Conduct also states that the principal can tell a student or parent when clothing is inappropriate and if it interferes with others learning.

However, at the age of 18, high school seniors are required to make life-changing decisions including where would they like to spend the next four years of their lives and equally as important, what would they like to do for the rest of their lives. If students are granted the responsibility to make these life-altering decisions, it is fair to give them the right to choose what they want to wear to school.

So, as the warm spring days are fast approaching, use your own judgment for the clothing you wear to school. Remember that school is a place to learn and not a place where clothing should be a distraction.

Do you think Byram Hills should implement a stricter dress code?