On the first day of school in 2021, 13-year-old Sophia was shocked that she was being sent to the front office for a dress code violation. Upon entering one of her classes, a male teacher stood at the doorway and asked all the students to put their hands by their sides to determine whether or not their shorts/pants/skirts were an appropriate length (per the dress code, no student can show skin above where their fingers fall on their legs). Sophia's violation was that she had a hole in her jeans that didn't fall beneath her fingers and thus was too "revealing."
When her mom, Sarah, was called to the office to bring new clothes for Sophia, she was already angry. She had picked out the first day of school clothes with her daughter the night before. But she became even more upset when she saw 16 girls and no boys in the office, all of whom were missing instructional time because they had been "dress coded." So she ordered a shirt that read:
DRESS CODES ARE
Sophia and her friends, boys too btw, now wear these shirts on Fridays as a protest to their school dress code. By the way, Sophia attends a middle school in Cobb County, where masks have been deemed optional by the school board and left up to "parent choice."
The reality is that dress codes have always led to unequal treatment for especially women, and also kids of color or lower-incomes. Now, as masking policies are being debated across the country, it's a great time to change outdated, restrictive and discriminatory dress codes. Sophia told her story to the AJC and received an extremely passionate response from parents and kids all over metro Atlanta and beyond. She launched this website in response and is trying to secure signatures for her petition as well as selling t-shirts for more students and parents to protest.
Please Join Us In Making A Change.
I do not wish to abolish the dress code altogether. However, there are many versions of the Toronto dress code in effect throughout our nation that have been successful. There is no reason it cannot be successful here in Georgia.