Students Participate in Dress Code Forum

By Olivia Khan, Section Editor

Recently, the Flint Hill upper school held one of its first forums. The topic of discussion was one of frequent debate: the dress code. In previous years, Flint Hill held an uncomfortably high standard to what students can and cannot wear to school. Now, the dress code is much more relaxed, allowing students to express themselves and be comfortable during the long school days. 

Through the introduction of forums, students hope that Flint Hill will begin to talk more about sensitive topics such as sexual assault, racism, and sexism to name a few; all of which were present in the survey students took last year about bettering Flint hill’s society. Hopefully with the new implementation of forums, students can express their ideas openly about the ways in which Flint Hill and the stigmas within it need to change.

During the recent dress code forum, female students powerfully spoke about how having a dress code that is not fluent throughout both genders is highly subjective and unfair. One student explained to me that even though they did not truly feel that the forum was an open discussion, they pushed themselves to speak because they understand that the forum provides a valuable platform. It is absolutely crucial that Flint Hill understands that there are more restrictions put on the women that attend this school compared to the men. Like in many other places, women are highly sexualized for trivial matters such as bra straps, skirt lengths, and even shoulders. Yes, shoulders. Women who choose to dress themselves this way are entirely not the problem. I, along with many of my fellow female classmates have been subjected to these notions at Flint Hill. The students’ dress code issue stems from more than just uncomfortable pants and button down shirts. It stems from sexualization of clothing that is highly prevalent in society and Flint Hill.

However, the establishment of forums is a step in the right direction. Ida Guerami, a student who spoke at the forum, explains that she believes that “if the points made during this forum were understood and truly internalized there would be some type of indication that the administration is working to better the school. As always we get the classic ‘we see you, we hear you, and we are going to change’ speech but nothing ever happens.” It is highly important for Flint Hill to have such forums. Yet, there needs to be a more active effort to update the students on the debated matter.  Some students said that the forums are conducive to important and meaningful conversations. However, if the school administration wants more participation, they will have to adjust the structure; the forums are simply too big. 

Hopefully, as we continue to have more discussions about the dress code at Flint Hill, there will be more of a widespread understanding on the deeper meaning of dress code; hint, it’s not really about clothes, it’s about censorship and control.