Last spring, my daughter broke her arm (attempting a cartwheel on a trampoline). She had to wear a full-arm cast for nearly two hot and sweaty months.
With her elbow bent at a 90-degree angle, she struggled to put on regular T-shirts. Of course, it was much easier for her to put on a sleeveless shirt. So, like a good mother, I immediately went out and bought her a few sleeveless shirts. I didn’t even consider checking the school dress code.
I realized my mistake the following day, when my daughter came home from school upset and embarrassed. Halfway through the day, one of her (male) teachers told her she was violating the school dress code, and sent her to the office. She was given a warning and told to make sure that her clothing would be appropriate in the future.
I felt bad for my daughter, and went out and got her a few larger, stretchy, T-shirts. I had to help her put on her shirts by weaving her cast through the stretched out sleeve. We were both relieved when the weekend came and she could wear her sleeveless shirts.
Now that winter is finally over, and hot summer days are right around the corner, we have to deal with the dress code again. Fortunately, we don’t have to worry about customizing a wardrobe to fit a cast. We do have to worry about staying cool, without violating the dress code.
My elementary girls never worry about violating dress code. If there is a dress code, no one enforces it. The middle and high schools are not as lax. If a girl wants to wear sleeveless shirt, with shorts or a skirt (that doesn’t come halfway down her leg), she runs the risk of being sent to the office and asked to change.
I decided to check the dress codes of a few other schools, to see if they had similar dress codes. I discovered that if my daughter was attending Homedale or Boise schools, she could wear sleeveless shirts. Here is a brief summary of what I found:
West Ada schools
- No Clothing that is sheer or does not cover the stomach, back, chest/cleavage, or undergarments.
- No Tank tops, spaghetti straps, tube tops, off-the-shoulder shirts – shoulders must be covered.
- No Chains connecting the wallet to a belt loop or worn anywhere on the person.
- No Spiked clothing, belts or jewelry.
- No attire shorter than mid-thigh length – any attire with holes/tears/frays above mid-thigh.
- No blouses, sweaters or shirts that do not cover the stomach, back and/or undergarments.
- No loose-fitting tank-type shirts, or tops with straps that do not measure at least a dollar width, and other apparel deemed inappropriate or immodest by the staff and administration.
- No cut-offs, shorts, and dresses must be finger-tip in length which is modest and appropriate for school time as deemed by the staff and administration. This also includes cuts, rips, or holes in any clothing that could be deemed immodest.
- No clothing with questionable language or graphics portrayed pajamas and items of clothing portraying alcohol, tobacco and/or illegal substances.
- No clothing, accessories, cosmetics, tattoos and jewelry that are immodest, disruptive, gang-related or displaying illegal or banned substances.
- Students may not wear head coverings in school buildings during school hours, except as authorized by the principal.
- Shoes are required at all times unless a school official indicates otherwise.
- We expect clothes to be modest. Outer clothes to cover underwear completely.
- Spaghetti string blouses/dresses, bare midriffs, tank tops, tube tops, off the shoulder tops, half tops, halter tops, muscle shirts, self-altered tops, or tops with plunging necklines (no cleavage) are not acceptable.
- While standing, skirts and shorts must be not more than 3” above the top of the knees.
- Transparent or “see through” clothes are not acceptable.
- “Sagging” pants, pajamas, slippers, other sleepwear, hats, head coverings (including sunglasses), and excessive makeup are not acceptable.
- Visible body piercing, nose piercing, lip piercing, or other facial piercings, magnetic jewelry/glued jewelry on the face, eyes, arms, hands, tongue or feet is also prohibited and must be removed.
- All shorts, skirts, and dresses must be no shorter than the width of a dollar bill (2 1/2 inches) above the kneecap.
- Pants must fit properly, be worn at the waist, and have no holes above the knee.
- Leggings are allowed ONLY under a long shirt or sweater that is no shorter than 6 inches above the kneecap.
- All tops must have sleeves.
- No necklines lower than a straight line from the top of the underarm to the other underarm.
- No midriff, shoulders, cleavage or back exposed at any time.
- No loungewear, pajamas, athletic shorts or pants, or sweatpants.
What is your school’s dress code? Do you (or your kids) agree with the limitations?