A wave of new teacher dress codes is inundating schools across America and threatening to sap the last little bit of dignity that the much-maligned school teacher has left. The Wichita School District has made it a point to regulate teachers' appearance, from the number of visible tattoos a teacher is allowed to have (that number would be zero), to the width of straps on female teachers' sleeveless shirts. If you can think of anything more humiliating than a teacher standing in the principal's office while a hall monitor measures the straps on her shirt, congratulations — you are the most pessimistic person in the world.
The number of public schools requiring their students to wear uniforms has almost doubled over the past decade, reaching 19 percent according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Some schools, believing that teachers are starting to dress inappropriately, are taking steps to make sure that the people regularly denigrated by parents and school administration alike will lose the one last comfort of a job that is becoming increasingly thankless each day — the ability to wear jeans, for instance, or the ability to intimidate eighth graders into not fucking around by showing them a scary-looking forearm tattoo. If America doesn't plan on paying its teachers more or maybe not blaming them for how shitty kids can be, the least it can do is let them all wear pajamas to school.
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