Opinion: Despite supportive students, staff, dress code still hinders fashion expression


Ally Haggard, Writer

High School offers opportunities for students to build themselves up as people, including the opportunity to express themselves through fashion choices, and, according to a student poll at The Colony, over half of the surveyed students feel the same way.

Although the staff on campus is extremely supportive and encourages us to be our true and best selves, the dress code’s restrictions do not enable that same support.

Being at school five days per week, for eight hours a day, students have grown to find school as a steadfast opportunity to showcase outfits. As fashion is a huge outlet for most teenagers, and is oftentimes used to showcase their emotions, you can generally understand how a person is feeling based on the clothes they are wearing.

Junior Shalimar Nguyen

Additionally, 70 percent of students polled in a survey agreed they even get inspired by others’ style or unique fashion choices, which makes them even more confident in themselves. The fashion outlet gives students the chance to understand their own emotions, become self-aware and build character.

School offers the opportunity to express these things, but the restrictions also make it challenging. The more restrictions there are, the less that we can express ourselves. 

Understandably, school should be viewed predominantly as a learning environment, and a realtively formal and clean look should be encouraged, but that does not affect the way we learn. How are other people being bothered by us wearing things that motivate us or make us feel more comfortable? Although there is a level of professionalism that should be met, it should not be required.

For teenage students in high school, it can be difficult to balance such a heavy workload while also trying to take care of personal dilemmas. Between mental health, home life and developing into young adults, certain clothes that a banned from campus should be supported. Pajama pants show no skin, can be minimally distracting and are still not allowed; hoodies have never hindered my learning experience, yet we still cannot have them on.

We have made strides in the right direction in allowing dyed hair colors and piercings, but there is still room to grow.

How do these things bother other students or staff?

Still, I do agree there should still be a dress code to help balance student expression and formalities, but to a lot of students, it seems like finding issues with student dress code is a priority over other, more important avenues. 

However, this is not the case for everyone at The Colony, and more importantly, for all of the staff.

Overall, the culture of The Colony High School remains encouraging and pro-student expression. From motivational posters, uplifting students and positive teachers, there is still a healthy culture at The Colony that is very welcoming, but the actual rules and restrictions are what makes it difficult at times to fully express ourselves. Further, it seems to bout with the vision that The Colony High School hopes to give us and the student community.