Illinois school to revisit dress code following leggings controversy

March 19, 2014 at 3:43 PM
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EVANSTON, Ill., March 19 (UPI) -- The principal of a suburban Chicago middle school said the dress code is under review following complaints about rules governing leggings.

Principal Kathy Roberson of Haven Middle School in Evanston sent home a letter to parents Tuesday following complaints from some parents about their daughters being told last week they would not be allowed to wear tight leggings or yoga pants to school anymore, the Chicago Tribune reported Wednesday.

The school's dress code, posted on its website, appears to ban leggings even when worn under shorts or a skirt.

"Shorts, dresses, and skirts must extend closer to the knee than the hip, short shorts or skirts and leggings are unacceptable attire. Pants and shorts must be worn at the waist," the dress code states.

However, Robertson said leggings are not banned and the school's dress code and enforcement policy will be reviewed by a panel next week.

Parents Juliet and Kevin Bond said they feel enforcement of the dress code has been inconsistent.

The couple wrote a letter to the principal saying they feel the dress code restrictions "contribute to rape culture."

"There are kids who will get a demerit or be sent home or told to put on gym shorts if they are wearing leggings that some teachers deem inappropriate," Juliet Bond told the Tribune. "I think it's shaming our girls. I think it's making them feel ashamed of their changing bodies."

"There are appropriate ways to behave and act, including in school, and it's not about telling the girls what not to wear because the boys will get too excited," said Kevin Bond, who teaches high school in another district. "That's an easy way out."

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