SBDM revises school dress code


Olivia Evans

Manual’s School-Based Decision Making Council (SBDM) passed a revised version of the school dress code today, formally advising that “shorts, skirts and dresses should extend to approximately 1/3 of thigh length” and that “tight and/or form-fitting bottoms should be accompanied by a top that covers the front and back of the hips.”

After a lengthy discussion about the current policy, the new code was passed 5-1, with parent representative Shannon Evans opposing the motion.

The council changed the dress code’s language about the necessity to facilitate a “professional, distraction-free learning environment” to the need for a “serious learning environment.” Principal Mr. Jerry Mayes argued for the revision, stating that though some of the clothes students wear to school are not necessarily appropriate for a professional setting, they do not disrupt education.

The SBDM also officially banned all strapless and spaghetti strap shirts, though the new policy still leaves many questions of appropriateness to teacher discretion.

Mayes said that before he presented the code before SBDM, he distributed it to members of Manual’s student government to hear their input.

“I never realized how much students hate the fingertip rule about dress code,” he said.

Ms. Evans, the only SBDM member to dissent, said that she still thought the revised dress code was targeted toward female students.

“I don’t agree with having dress code because everything you read is subject to leaning towards girls only,” she said. “It can actually make them more self conscious and feel like they have body issues that they never felt they had until it was pointed out to them.”

According to Mr. Mayes, very few students this year have served detentions for violations under the old dress code, since most are compliant and willing to cooperate with administrators.

“There have been a couple students who have had issues, but this puts parameters in place to just reinforce things,” he said.

A copy of the new dress code is embedded below:

Until today, the dress code policy as stated in the 2015-2016 agenda was as follows:

Click here to read more RedEye coverage about the school dress code.