Review Dress Code Policies at Seymour High School

Review Dress Code Policies at Seymour High School

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Ahliana Gonzalez started this petition to Board of Education Member James Garofolo and

This petition is to make a voice for the current AND future students attending Seymour High School in Connecticut. Regardless of gender and sexual orientation, we firmly believe the dress code is extremely unfair, inappropriate, and outdated. 

While yes, we realize and respect certain boundaries regarding proper appearance at school, dress coding a student for something they can’t control is not okay. This mainly pertains to feminine teens that are more physically developed than others. If there were two feminine-presenting teens of the same height in the same classroom, wearing the same clothes, one more curvy than the other, the curvy teen would get dress coded. This is due to an old fashioned and sexist way of thinking. The curvier person was dress coded instead of the non-curvy person because a curvy ‘woman’ is more attractive, and thus distracting, via society’s standards. 

Punishing a teen for the way clothes sit on their body can cause severe emotional and even physical problems later in life. 

After the Seymour High School Administration sent out a “Remind” pertaining to people who wear shirts that don’t cover their “mid-body skin,” many students, myself included, clicked on the link attached. Come to find that the school dress code policy hadn’t been changed since July 21st, 2003… which means it’s outdated by more than 15 years. Ironically, the very first point says “The administration will take appropriate determination on the newest clothing fads or styles as they pertain to the above dress policy. The administration will determine what attire is unclean and dangerous, or distracts from the educational process.”


Considering the dress code hasn’t been updated since 2003, which was before many of us were even born, we believe that the SHS Administration, in fact, has NOT taken the newest clothing fads, or styles into consideration when discussing dress code policy… they haven’t talked about it at all.

Again, we recognize certain boundaries, however due to the SHS building not being air conditioned, wearing tank tops could be very helpful for a lot of teens that don’t handle the heat well. Tank tops are not distracting to anyone besides teachers that notice we’re wearing one. As for shorts and skirts, they are also not a distraction due to teens that wear said clothing items sitting down in class. Our bottoms are not exposed, and should, therefore, not be distraction to anyone. If it does capture someone’s attention, that is on them. They should not be sexualizing my 13-18 year old body. As for ripped jeans, I doubt anybody looks at my knee cap and thinks “Wow.. What a sexy knee.” Most masc-presenting teens have seen something more attractive on social media, and are therefore typically desensitized to the average feminine body.

The most concerning moments about the dress code pertains to the men dishing out said violations.  Including telling one feminine teen they “look like they belong on a beach” and asking another feminine teen to “stand up” so he could get a “better look” at her crop top. Lastly, the one that stood out the most, was looking a 13/14 year old freshman up and down and saying “what would your mother thinking i sent her a PICTURE of what you’re wearing right now?”

More and more the dress code continues to keep us in an unsafe environment. The restrictions, put on how we dress, leaves little room for self expression, and even fear to do so due to comments from high level staff members. It’s not the “boys” sexualizing feminine teens. It’s the teachers. 

I would like to close by saying this: Limiting our freedom of expression violates our first amendment right. Not to mention, by looking at 13-17 year olds and dress coding them for “sexual innuendos,” you are inherently sexualizing a minor. This dress code creates an unwholesome environment that makes many students uncomfortable.

We would like to have the freedom to express ourselves freely and safely. Having room for self expression would greatly increase the moral and livelihood of students, Thank you for your time.


Ahliana Gonzalez, ‘23

Seymour High School, class of 2022-2025


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