Local Wisconsin High School Called Out for Ridiculous Rule

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Imagine going to your prom all over again. You are getting ready with your friends, putting on makeup, strapping on some cute heels you just got bought, and lastly, of course, putting on the dress that you couldn’t wait to wear. Your only fear is that someone else might be wearing the same dress as you, but it doesn’t matter because you are ready for the dance almost every girl looks forward to. But, what if you had another fear besides possibly wearing the same dress as someone else? Unfortunately, female students at Pewaukee High School in Wisconsin have another hurdle they have to face before they can actually walk through the doors of their school dance.

This school, according to their handbook, requires female students to send photos of them with their dress to administration before being allowed to come to the dance. This dress code rule has caused a lot of controversy among parents, students, and females, in general. This rule was implemented because the Superintendent of Waukesha District wanted to avoid any problems once girls showed up to the dance. By having female students send in photos prior to the dance, the administration was hoping to avoid sending girls home because they were breaking the dress code. "It's really just a practical process that was put in place to benefit students," Pewaukee School District Superintendent Mike Cady told TODAY. "As opposed to dealing with them at the door of a dance and sending some home to change, this practice was put in place so that it could be handled in a sensitive, proactive manner, and they can attend a dance confident that they are complying with the rules (TODAY).

”While this may have been the intentions of the district, many parents are concerned with this rule because they feel that it is, “sexist and micromanaging their children (Journal Sentinel).” It is alarming that the administration would go so far to expect the students to send photos because it is, in a way, invading these girls’ privacy. It is awkward to have to send a front and back photo of you wearing a dress just so you can get your ticket into the door.

Courtesy: FourTwentySomethings


Dress codes in schools have been a hot topic debate for many years. Whether they should be used or not is a question that has baffled many. With this rule, it is going too far. This school is almost implying that they do not trust their students enough to follow the dress code. On top of this, every girls’ body is different and what one dress looks like on one girl does not look the same on another girl. It almost tears down girls’ confidence because they have to fit a certain mold that their school expects instead of wearing what they feel the most confident in. Along with the hot topic of dress code, it opens the conversation of why we expect so much from female students in regards to what is appropriate and what is not? These stigmas of what is inappropriate plays a role into the problems of rape culture. Why is it deemed inappropriate in the first place?

One parent weighed in, "The girls are essentially being held responsible for the wayward thoughts (administrators) think boys have," said Rebecca Sheperd, whose daughter is a freshman at Pewaukee this year (Journal Sentinel).

The administration of this school wants to prevent any girls from wearing inappropriate and out of dress code attire, but why are the boys not being asked to do so too? Instead of focusing on what boys might do and what thoughts they may have about the girls that could cause problems, we should be teaching men to not take part in rape culture.“Rape culture is a term that was coined by feminists in the United States in the 1970’s. It was designed to show the ways in which society blamed victims of sexual assault and normalized male sexual violence (WAVAW).”

This dress code rule is normalizing male sexual violence because it is telling girls that what they may or may not wear to the school dance is the problem and we need to put an end to you as the problem. Instead of putting these kinds of restrictions on female students, we should be giving them the freedom to wear what they feel the most confident in and trusting them. While dress code may help eliminate some problems, these extreme rules will only cause backlash among teens, parents, and other communities.

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