Huntley High School’s dress code policies need to change


By Natalie VonderHeide

‘What is the point of Huntley High School’s dress code?’ and “why can’t we wear hats?’ are all questions that come across the mind of every teenager in Huntley. 

Dress codes are something that have been around for a while and implemented across the United States for quite some time. Occasionally there is a school that is advertised nationwide about strict dress codes or display an inequality among gender regarding restrictions. But, is there really a point to changing what we wear? 

Let’s get back to the basics. Huntley’s dress code was put in place of the year 1996, the year the school was built. The dress code at the time was very sexist and caused a group of freshmen to retaliate against the district until there was a change to be made. 

The current dress code here at HHS is a lot more open, but still does not feel equal. The inseam of our shorts still have to remain longer than our ID held vertically, and we are not supposed to show any undergarments or cleavage. That could be understandable, right? Well, no. While the school claims the dress code is not a matter of gender and is implemented as equal to boys as it is to girls, it’s not. 

 “Essentially what we want, is everything covered,” Alice Ohlinger, Huntley High School’s A-G, 10-12 dean said. 

When discussing the matter of everything being covered, would that include the nipples men show with their shoulder cut t-shirts, or the underwear that shows when they sag their pants? It’s the things that men wear that do not get noticed, but when a woman shows some cleavage or has a lace bra that is noticable, that’s when eyes turn. 

“Guys, you can’t have those big sleeveless things that come all the way down. It looks great if everyone is at the beach but not if you wear them in school,” Ohlinger said. 

Does anyone know of any male that has ever been dress coded for wearing a shirt like this? Or any male being dress coded in general? I sure haven’t and neither have any of my friends. 

Our school dress code needs to be more lenient. I understand the exception of someone exposing too much, but understand that outside of school, people are going to be wearing these outfits that cover barely any part of their body, and they can still go to work and they still can participate in their normal daily activities. I believe HHS’s dress code should allow people to wear whatever they want with the exception of showing more than 65% of undergarments or posing a threat. 

This is under the First Amendment: Freedom. We as a student in a public high school have the right to express ourselves as long as no one is at risk or in danger. 

The older generation of our society believes that dress codes should be in place and this seems to remain consistent. 

“I think it’s a very good idea to have a dress code because some people would wear inappropriate clothing,” Nancy Stompor said.

While people may feel that inappropriate clothing being worn is the problem with having no dress code, this is what has become our normality. People no longer wearing long sleeve t-shirts that are a little looser or shorts around our fingertip length indicating there is a change to be made.  

While the dress code is a difficult topic to fight, beanies being worn around school should not be a hard discussion. According to Ohlinger, the reason we can’t wear beanies in school is because it’s a form of respect to take your hat off in buildings. 

“It’s an old school thing where you come into the building and take your hat off. It’s respectful,” Ohlinger said. 

Can I just ask, who are we trying to respect right now? We come to school in what we want to wear and if a hat completes our outfit and does not cover our face, we should be able to wear it. 

We come from classrooms that are almost 80 degrees to ones that are so cold we put our coats back on. Finals week is approaching and people’s stress levels tend to get pushed higher as more pressure is brought upon them. Stress can cause people to do things such as pick hair and skin. 

Brogan Murphy, writer for the National Alliance on Mental Health group has suffered with stress before and became diagnosed with Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors. 

“As both a concealing and preventative measure, my parents worked out an agreement with my teachers to let me wear a hat in class (something that was ordinarily against the rules). This did help prevent me from pulling out the hair on my head,” Murphy wrote in an article about her experience.

Hats are no longer for the fashion trends, but also for the people who are struggling and need to take preventative measures. 

Students should not be restricted to what they wear with the exception of undergarments, and hats not covering faces should be allowed to be worn because there is no safety threat posed.