Durant High School Journalism

How Dress Codes affect students differently.

Rose Lynn, student at MacArthur High School in Oklahoma making a statement about her school's dress code.

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Rose Lynn, student at MacArthur High School in Oklahoma making a statement about her school's dress code.

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Dress code has been a long-term debate on whether it’s fair and unbiased, and students are beginning
to make their voices heard.Most school dress codes are the same, no tank tops, no shoulders, bottoms be fingertip length, and if you wear leggings, your shirt must cover your butt.

These policies are meant to ensure that there is no disruption to the learning environment, however, this does not seem to be the case for many schools nation-wide. Many students, especially females, are stepping out claiming that dress code policies are biased, sexist, and make them feel as though they are “distractions” instead of students.

This is shared by Oklahoma teen, Rose Lynn, pictured above, in 2015 as reported by Jordi Lippe-McGraw on TODAY. Lynn attends MacArthur High School in Oklahoma. One December morning she went and put on an outfit she believed to be appropriate based on the dress code. This outfit included a loose shirt, lengthy cardigan, and leggings. While at school that day she was sent home for said outfit and told that it was “deemed inappropriate and distracting” as reported by TODAY.

She did not let that stop her, she returned to the school wearing leggings and a lengthy white t-shirt that had stated in black marker ink “It doesn’t cover your crotch, you’ll distract the boys.”

This is what administration said to her before sending her home previously. She then later posted a picture of her outfit on social media along with a paragraph describing what happened and her opinion on the matter, and finished with a statement that read, “So once again, society has failed to advocate for young ladies, by confining them in a box, where they are stripped from their since of self-respect and self-expression.”

She also made claims on how her school is biased saying that is if she was “skin and bones or overweight” she would have been overlooked, but the fact that she is curvy is part of the reason she was singled out. And she isn’t the only teen to claim this.

A middle schooler in Maine has shown her determination in making her voice heard. At the time of the beginning of her movement, Molly Neuner, 11, of Portland, Maine, was sent home multiple times for the clothing she wore after
being told she would be a “distraction” towards males by at least two teachers, as reported by Danielle Waugh of NBC New York. After being told this, she claimed that “It just made [fellow students] feel uncomfortable”.

When she returned home, she discovered a hashtag that would not only inspire her, but many others. She returned to school the next day trying to make a statement. She did this by wearing a spaghetti strap tank top and wrote on her arm the hashtag “#iamnotadistraction.”

After seeing this, many students followed her lead by writing the same hashtags on their arms. After catching
the attention of multiple news outlets, schools began realizing that dress codes may be in need of reviewing.

When asked, Durant students did not hesitate to respond to the questions, “What is your opinion on school dress codes? Do you believe that they are biased or make females feel as they are a distraction?”

Senior Laura Bergman responded with the statement, “It’s stupid and teaches girls and boys to feel uncomfortable in their skin. It also teaches girls and boys what they should sexualize.”

Senior Gabbi Mora gave a similar response, “honestly, school dress code isn’t fair. Some girls show up breaking it every day and aren’t caught, but the second some innocent girl has her fingertips one inch past their shorts, it’s a problem, I don’t think it’s fair whatsoever.”

However, not all students agree with these statements. Emma Adcock, Junior, claims that “I believe if we didn’t have one then girls would be getting pregnant left and right. Dress codes protect both sexes.”

Students at Durant remain on both ends of the spectrum, and hopefully the new policies in place this school year are what we need. By updating the school dress code for the school year of 2019-2020, students can finally come to an agreement on what we need and what is to excessive, making guidelines that keep everyone happy, and no longer cause females to feel as if they are more of a distraction and less of a student.

About the Writer
Faith Miller, Staff Writer

Faith Miller is a senior at Durant High School and is a Staff Writer for the Durant PawPrint. This year will be her fourth season on the varsity Durant...

How to prepare for senior year and college

Staff writer Meghan Dulay provides tips on how to maximize your high school experience.

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‘Tis the season of scheduling and programming for juniors and seniors. For many, this is among the most stressful part of the year; we are expected to know what classes we want, need and have to take. We are expected to plan out a whole school year of classes, and be prepared for the work load that comes along with that. Some know exactly what they are doing, which is great; it makes scheduling and planning a lot easier. Many, however, have no idea what they’re doing, which is okay too. Being a junior myself, I myself am experiencing all the same worries and fears everyone else might be too.

I’m sure the phrases “What’s the plan for college,” “What do you plan on majoring in,” “How are your grades,” “In order to even be considered by colleges you must have at least a 5000 SAT score,” and a plethora of others have been the topic of conversation of many family dinners and with guidance counselors. It’s scary and stressful, I know. Here is a little “how-to” guide with information and tips that may help you get through this stressful season, and help answer any lingering questions that may be hard to find answers to.

 

1. Continue to try your best in school.

As hard as it might be to stay focused and motivated to do well, try. School seems to get in the way of everything. Work, sports, hobbies, and of course our social lives are a huge part of our daily lives; often we put these things before trying to get an A on that pre-calculus test. If there’s one thing going to school has taught me most, is to develop self-discipline and the willing to persevere. Yes, it may seem pointless to learn about the Pythagorean Theorem, or “10-Steps to Tackling the Text,” or memorizing the periodic table of elements, or why the French and Indian war is important to American history, especially if you know you won’t be pursuing any career that involves those listed. However, it is important to learn as much as you can while education is FREE! Plus by taking as many classes as you can, you can figure out what you like and what you don’t. Just as someone once said: “Knowledge is power.”

 

2. Get involved in extracurricular activities at school.

I’m not just talking sports. There are about a hundred different clubs to get involved in, some you’ve probably never heard of. Juniors, before turning in programming sheets, look over all the clubs and electives available at Durant; you may be surprised at what you find. It’s also a good way to figure out where your interests lie.

 

3. Focus on self-care.

For many, this is among the most stressful season of the year. 8:30am-3:25pm is school, 3:45pm-5:30pm is soccer practice, 6pm-10pm, 10:30pm-1:00am is homework. Sound familiar? Whether or not you follow a routine similar to this or not, we all live busy lives; everything is go go GO! Remember that there a bigger purpose to everything you are doing. Remember your morals and what is important to you. On your way to school, listen to your favorite song. During lunch, eat a cookie. Before you go to bed, drink a glass of water. Live your best life, and never forget to take care of yourself.

 

4. College and scholarships.

For many, college is the next step- whether that’s next semester, or next year, or even years from now. College isn’t for everyone, but if it’s for you, and you could see it as a possibility for the future, the sky’s the limit. Starting in high school, there are many different things that can be done to get to college. Athletic scholarships aren’t the only scholarships out for grabs; there are many different academic scholarships available that you may consider looking into. The most popular of these is the Bright Future’s Scholarship. There are three categories that a student can achieve through the Bright Future’s scholarship: the 100 percent scholarship, the 75 percent scholarship, and the 50 percent scholarship. Each scholarship has different requirements, and depending on the requirements met depends on which scholarship a student qualifies for. Even if a student qualifies for only the 50 percent coverage of the scholarship, that would still make a big impact in the cost of college classes, covering a big portion of college tuition. For more information about the scholarship and requirements that need to be met to earn the scholarship, visit https://www.nationalmeritscholarships.com/florida-bright-futures-scholarship.html

 

5. Make the best of your situation.

Everyone has their fair share of problems, mistakes, and flaws. However, these things do not define who you are as a person. A little bit ago, I was at my brother’s basketball game, and after losing their championship game, his coach brought the team together for a talk to review the game they just played. The most impactful thing I heard him say to the team was: “Always put 100 percent in everything you’re doing. Not 60 percent, not 90 percent, but 100 percent.” Make 100 percent a habit, and never settle for less.

 

I sincerely hope everyone makes the best of their final years as a high school student. Eventually we will walk down the halls for the last time, close our lockers for the last time, have our last pep rally, and attend our last Friday night Football game. Everything is what you make it, so make it count!

About the Writer
Photo of Meghan Dulay
Meghan Dulay, Editor-in-Chief of Design

Meghan Dulay is a senior at Durant High School and she is Editor-in-Chief of Design for the PawPrint newspaper. Meghan is part of many other clubs at Durant,...

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