“This generation is really challenging the gender norms we grew up with,” said Diane Ehrensaft, an Oakland psychologist who writes about gender. “A lot of youths say they won’t be bound by boys having to wear this or girls wearing that. For them, gender is a creative playing field.” Adults, she added, “become the gender police through dress codes.”
The article ” Can a Boy Wear a Skirt to School ” talks about how dress codes in schools can hold teens and children back from expressing their gender preference. Most school have certain criteria that everyone is supposed to follow. Girls can not wear clothing that is too tight or revealing, and guys can not wear anything that could be gang related or too baggy. When it comes to what clothes violate gender ‘Norms” there is a little more confusion and debate. A lot of teachers and administrators say that children who cross dress are a distraction to other students, while other teachers say they encourage students to be different.
The author talks about incidences where kids were suspended or forced to go home to change because of the clothes they chose the wear. One girl had wore a tuxedo for a school picture, because of this the picture was banned from being published in the year book. This is where the big question comes in of are the administrators protecting the students from harassment, or are they the ones harassing. Technically a tuxedo is not against the dress code, just as a boy with a appropriate skirt on is not a violation as well. This is an issue that most school boards have problems with they need to find that medium so it is not being discriminatory, but not giving too much freedom in school.
I do understand where some teachers feel as though if they make it so boys dress like “boys”, and girls dress like “girls” that they may reduce bullying. Although I feel there is a better way of going about it instead of forcing someone to dress as something they are not. If schools allow kids to dress as they please maybe this will make other students more accepting of each others preference. Banning cross dressing will only convince society even more that it is completely unacceptable. As long as the student is not dressing in a provocative way, they should have freedom of choice on how to dress.