Petitioning Maine South High School

Maine South High School: end the over-sexualization of young women's bodies

UPDATE (7/25/17 8:40 AM): The Principal of Maine South has contacted me to let me know that they have decided to include this photo in the yearbook. He also let me know that he plans to organize a student group dedicated to updating and revising this policy. 

My name is Grace Goble, and I am going into my senior year at Maine South High School in Park Ridge, IL. I was recently informed that I will need to retake my senior photo because my shoulders were showing, which is against the school dress code. As you can see, this photo is completely innocent, and the sweater that I am wearing is modest and covers my body very appropriately. This is a shirt which I have worn to school and to school events before, and no one has ever given it a second thought. 

I am proposing a change to the Maine South High School dress code. The section regarding this particular topic currently reads: "Students are expected to wear opaque clothing that covers them from shoulder to approximately mid-thigh. For example, students shall not wear halter tops, garments with thin straps, or strapless garments. Garments that are “see-through,” cut low, or exposes one’s midriff are not acceptable. Skirts and shorts should not be shorter than approximately mid-thigh." I propose that the rule that shoulders must be covered is changed or revoked. 

I have spent a good majority of my life wondering why exactly women's shoulders are so offensive. It is ridiculous that young women aren't allowed to wear the clothing that they wish to wear simply because it could possibly distract someone. Why must young women be denied the ability to express themselves through their fashion simply because there may be a few people out there who cannot control themselves? Shaming women for wearing the things that make them feel comfortable and happy in their bodies is horribly sexist, and leads many girls to grow up believing that if another individual cannot control their actions around women, that the woman was at fault. It is astounding to me that this issue comes up again and again, and not much seems to be done about it.  Do not force any more girls to grow up being taught that they must hide their bodies because others cannot control themselves.

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