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Ditch the Dress Code, Portsmouth Middle School!

This petition had 603 supporters

Here is a list of reasons we disagree with the dress code. If you agree that something needs to change, sign the petition and share with your friends.

Many of the girls in the Portsmouth Middle School community have a issue with the way we're being treated. We feel that our school wide dress code is showing inequality to our young women. In social studies we are being taught about racial prejudice, and we know that prejudice based on sexism is just as important, and is just as huge of a problem.

In the words of the  Portsmouth Middle School Handbook, page 20, section labeled, “RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES” it clearly states: “P.M.S is dedicated to recognize the rights and responsibilities of all it’s members. To that end, the violation or infringement of anyone’s civil, social, or physical rights will not be tolerated. Activities, language, (written or oral), pictures,. gestures, or touching that in any way that disparages a person’s dignity, race, or ethnic origin, GENDER, religion, or creed are not acceptable.Anyone who feels that any of their rights as stated above have been violated should contact a house leader, assistant principal, or principal.”

And we do feel that our civil rights as Portsmouth Middle School citizens have been violated on the basis of gender by that policy that was supposed to keep us safe from violation and infringement of our social, civil, and physical rights.

We would suggest that we can wear a type of shirt/tank top as long as it has 2 straps: 1 on either side, disregarding the width. We also suggest that we can wear low crop tops that don’t show higher than your belly button. And the length of the shorts can’t be higher than the lower knuckle of the thumb. These are just a couple of suggestions we have  proposed to make the dress code a little less strict when regarding the females.

By punishing us for our appearance you are saying it is okay for the boys in our school to not being able to look at us and see us as people and not as inanimate objects to be stared at. And while we are being pulled out of class to reminded of the dress code, the boys are not being to taught not to be distracted by a girls outfit to point were the “can’t focus in class” So from now how about instead of  punishing or even shaming girls for their outfit, and the way they look in it, we teach all students to respect each other as whole human beings?

•“Why fit in when we are meant to stand out!”
•Shaming us for our bodies
•Closing down our personalities
•This dresscode is giving us limits to our personality/creativity.
•Girls with long legs and long arms have to wear really long shorts , and some people really don't want to, and girls who have short arms have a easy way out of the dress code. •Our parents buy our clothes so obviously they’re fine with how we dress.
•The school policy is blaming us for the way our bodies look even though they used to praise us for our appearance in elementary school.
•If our appearance doesn't matter why are we getting punished for it?
•We get dressed for ourselves, we wear what makes us feel good, it’s not for anyone else.
•We don't pay money  to come to PUBLIC SCHOOL so you can’t tell us what to wear or what to look like.
•We get dressed in the morning in outfits that we want to wear, not to impress other people.
•Our bodies, our choice.
•It is unfair that we have the same rules for every unique body in this school.
•It is unfair that you base our dress code on what the boys get distracted on when that is not our fault. “Are my shoulders distracting?” The things we are getting dress coded on is our legs, our shoulders, and our belly buttons! There is no need for boys (or anyone) to get distracted on that! If they are getting distracted by that it is not our fault.
•Boys should be taught not to be distracted by the outfit on a girl is wearing.
•We should not have our outfits monitored just because the boys can’t control their own thoughts.
•For the most part these dress codes are designed to target and monitor the girls outfits and for the most part only the girls outfits get policed.
•Girls bodies are not on display for the boys to stare at like we are museum.

Written by Ava & Sophia, 5th graders at Portsmouth Middle School.

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