(As a point of reference, this BHS grad from 1974 came straight from class in this photo. Can you imagine what would happen to her now?)
For those of us who grew up in the mid-1970s and went to Burbank schools chock full of haltertops and bralessness, this is perverse:
Some local high school students are challenging Burbank Unified’s dress-code policy, saying it is sexist against girls, and they are planning to survey parents, teachers and students on how to amend the policy.
Eight students from Burroughs and Burbank high schools shared their personal experiences dealing with the dress-code policy during the public-comment period of a Burbank school board meeting last week.
According to the policy, clothing must not “detract from the academic environment” and cannot promote the use of illegal substances, alcohol and should be void of profanity and violence. Low-cut tops, spaghetti-strap shirts, short skirts and short shorts are not permitted, nor are beanies and hats.
If a student wears inappropriate clothing, they are asked to change or a parent is asked to bring appropriate clothing.
What does that mean, “appropriate”? The girls we grew up with in those outfits were cutting more glass than the Zaun Brothers. And nobody at school worried about it.
Burroughs High student Virginia Begakis said she was pulled out of an honors class earlier this month because she wore a shirt with straps that were too thin during a 110-degree day.
“School is telling us female bodies are distracting, and it’s wrong,” Virginia said, countering that the actual distraction is when teachers interrupt class to send a student away to change.
How right she is. And how about puerile and neurotic as hell? Let alone ideologically repressive.
Hanna Mikaelian, another Burroughs student, showed board members a photo of an outfit she wore that violated the dress code because her bra strap was visible underneath what appears to be a sheer cardigan.
Of course, all they get is condescension. And institution speak…
Supt. Matt Hill and John Paramo, district director of secondary education, visited Burroughs High to speak with the associated student body and explain how to create and implement policies.
He added that during the school board meeting last week, he sent emails to principals in the district stating they should be mindful of how a student is approached for violating the dress code.
“We encourage them to have town halls or forums to invite everybody after [they’ve] collected surveys so they can suggest changes for staff and the board to review,” Hill said during a phone interview.
As in the past, the school board can change these ridiculously moralistic dress code policies in an instant. Just put it on the agenda. They don’t need meetings and studies.
They won’t. Or, if they do, there’ll be all sorts of bargaining and student concessions/ridiculousness demanded in return. Everything will be spelled out to the point of absurdity.
Why were our schools infinitely more tolerant of the kids 40 years ago? What kind of mentality now is running these places?
Welcome to your “21st-century learning”!