Op -ed: Nogales High School Dress code

Nicolle Lopez, Junior

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Nogales High School’s dress code’s purpose is to make the school learning environment more conducive, but it does precisely the opposite. The dress code is biased, objectifies females, and restricts students from expressing themselves. 

The dress code is generalized to all students, but like many other schools, Nogales’ dress code targets the female’s apparel more severely. Nogales’ guidelines prohibits:  “Sexually suggestive, extremely brief, or attention diverting, low cut, strapless, spaghetti-strap, sheer, or off-the-shoulder tops.” 

The dress code is more lenient for male students. Brandon Martinez, a senior feels the dress code does not affect him at all: “The dress code is fine. I never have to worry about what I’m wearing. I can wake up in the morning and not think about getting dress coded. Even though violation of code is all too common with boys, it is rare to see them walking around with a loaner shirt. 

Secretary Mrs. Hernandez from SSC explains, “Girls tend to wear more revealing clothing and boys wear clothes that cover them up” and according to Nogales, the clothing mentioned is “sexually suggestive and distracting,” this is the problem with the dress code. When females are told not to wear certain articles of clothing, they are unfairly targeted and penalized. The girls are blamed for the distraction of others when a boy needs to be taught not to objectify girls and the dress code is a form of blaming girls instead of teaching boys to not stare. 

Banning specific clothing which obstructs free expression. Mayrin Benitez, a junior claims, ” The dress code violates freedom of speech, fashion is a form of expressing yourself.” Students are extremely limited as to what they can wear with these restrictions. 

It is time for Nogales High School to make a dress code that incorporates the entire student body, not just females.  We need to stop objectifying women by making the dress code less strict. Staff needs to understand that the dress code is labeling and controlling. The clothing students wear should not be considered an interference while learning. 

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