Laurel Co Schools Board of Education need to update discriminatory and sexist dress code.

Laurel Co Schools Board of Education need to update discriminatory and sexist dress code.

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Megan Stark started this petition to Laurel County Board of Education

In the Laurel County Schools Code of Conduct handbook, there is an outdated, sexist, and discriminatory list deemed the Appearance/Dress Code. Mentioned in different ways, it is said the goal of the dress code is to prevent the disruption of the educational process. The truth is, the only ones who are interfering with the educational process are the faculty at our Middle and High Schools. Laurel County Schools claim to want a positive learning environment, but how can we have this when we are being sexualized and discriminated against based on our sex, gender, and even our body types (example weight, size, or shape)? The faculty are empowered by Rule 14 to determine what is a violation beyond what the dress code states. This includes determining the length of shorts, skirts, and dresses. This nonsensical rule also allows faculty to force people to wear a second pair of pants because of decorative holes. We, the Student Body of South Laurel High School, North Laurel High School, South Laurel Middle School, and North Laurel Middle School hereby petition the Laurel County Schools Board of Education to revise the Student Dress Code. We are not asking for an elimination of it, we are asking that you actually take our education and mental well-being into consideration. We should not be punished for expressing ourselves through our clothing or hair styles. We should not be made to feel bad about our bodies. We should not feel sexualized by the adults who are there to educate us. Lets be honest, are our knees and shoulders really that distracting to the opposite sex? Do our bra straps really bother you so much, that our education is disrupted because you can see it? We are tired of feeling sexualized. We are tired of being judged because of how we look or how developed we are. We also want our peers to be free to be who they are. Making students dress conforming to faculty ideas of how a birth assigned sex should be dressed based on puritanical ideas is backwards and should not be tolerated. 

These are the changes we demand:

#3 Article of clothing, jewelry, body decoration, or hairstyle extreme enough to create a distraction or disturb the normal routine of school shall be deemed inappropriate.

Let us wear our hair how we feel. Our hair styles are an expression of who we are. They let us express our creativity and feelings. This idea includes our clothing, jewelry, and body decoration. If it isn't harmful to ourselves or others, what harm is it really doing??

#4 No halters, spaghetti straps, one-shoulder tops, low cut tops, or bare midriffs.  

Look at these. It's sexist! Theses are all female attire. We get we don't want breasts hanging out either, but what is the big deal with our shoulders showing? Or our belly buttons?? 

#6 Shirts must cover the body to the waist and must come to the edge of the shoulder.

Again, how does a belly button or shoulders interfere with anyone's education?

#9 No undergarments may be exposed. 

We aren't sure how our bras interfere with the educational process? They distract no one. This isn't 1990, people don't wear their bras or underwear outside of their clothes anymore. This rule is outdated. Bra straps fall. Some are thick. Some are thin. We don't get to choose our breast size, nor should we be objectified simply because we have breasts and wear bras. This rule limits our clothing options much as the unstated knee length shorts or skirts which do not exist in youth fashions. It's not like we're walking around dressed as a character from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. 

#14 School-level administration shall determine any questionable attire.

This is too much power given to individuals bound by different beliefs from a different time. The female student body, non-binary, and transsexual individuals should not be isolated as distractors for just existing, let alone being and dressing who they are and how they feel. 

#15 No student shall wear nose, eyebrow, lip or tongue rings, studs or piercings that create a distraction or safety hazard. 

We get safety hazards. There is no opposition on that part, but if we have a piercing on our body, how is that affecting anyone's education. Again, these are simply reflections on expression. 


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