Last week a 14-year-old middle-school girl in Tooele, Utah, was sent home for wearing a simple white T-shirt and a flowy skirt falling just above the knee.
The father, who claims his daughter’s hemline was only a centimeter too high, was clearly troubled by the school’s decision and shares his confusion in his blog post. The father goes on to suspect that the principal and teachers must have been thinking inappropriate thoughts about his daughter to consider this outfit provocative. Despite all the rhetoric about needing to preserve decorum or create a safe environment, the real reason for these codes is that adults teach children by setting arbitrary limits.
Learning to deal with rules and restrictions is one of the biggest challenges of growing up. To keep up with the more relaxed, casual clothing trends, dress codes have evolved over the years.

One writes in: “She looks lovely — stylish, fashionable outfit that is age-appropriate and completely devoid of all sleaze factor. These codes are put in place to create a safe learning environment and, more importantly, they teach kids how to follow the rules, most school officials would tell you. That’s my observation from having two adolescents at home who simultaneously want my wife and me to impose limits and resist them when we do. Many people probably remember the those more conservative times when boys weren’t allowed to step through school doors in blue jeans and girls were forbidden from wearing pants. That’s what people were asking when the girl’s father published the photo on his blog, Adult Onset Atheist, Jezebel picked it up and the “shocking” pic started spreading across the Internet universe like wildfire. Some of the worst fights I have had with my daughters involve, in the larger context of life, trivial matters.

Sullman at the Sun recalls girls lining up at the office in the morning to have their hemlines measured. Some schools don’t allow kids to wear hooded sweat shirts, a clothing item that’s often associated with gangs. Other principals banned Ugg boots because kids were hiding their cell phones in them and texting during class.  These rules actually make some sense.

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