It's only been two weeks since school started at Tottenville High School in Staten Island and already, some 200 students, mostly girls, at a Staten Island high school have been sent to detention over various dress code violations. And now the students intend to fight back.
According to updated regulation students are not allowed to wear tank tops, low-cut blouses, or short-shorts (shorter than fingertip length, so that varies student-to-student), but this seems particularly harsh considering the school does not have air conditioning (at least not in all the class rooms) and temperatures were in the high 80s. Via NY Post:
Tottenville HS junior Ashley Silberberg wore a T-shirt that bared 2 inches of midriff on Sept. 5, the second day of school, when the mercury topped 87 degrees.
She and 100 other stunned offenders were promptly hauled to the dean's office and then the auditorium, while their parents were called to drop off "appropriate" clothing.
If parents were working or unreachable, kids were forced to change into school-logo gym shorts and a T-shirt. The next day, 100 more kids were similarly punished at the academically well-regarded, 4,000-student school.
I don't know what the deal is with these mass dress code punishments, but I don't think they've ever really panned out well. Also, when has humiliation ever worked out well as a punishment for teenagers?
Apparently the new principal Joseph Scarmato had 15 staffers checking on students as they arrived at school, keeping an eye out for exposed skin. The district superintendent maintained their dress code policy, saying that inappropriate clothing "creates a distraction, is dangerous or interferes with the learning and teaching process."
Or maybe un-air-conditioned buildings and the need to pin the blame of distraction on female students create a distraction, are dangerous or interfere with the learning and teaching process. It's clear that, once again, female students are taking the bulk of the punishment for the dress code, and both male and female students plan on protesting the policy and some parents have considered legal action.
Image via CBS New York.