Schools Forcing Students to Wear Uniforms at Home, Likely Grounds Them Without Phone Privileges For Disobeying

School is back in session across the country, much of it taking place online or in a hybrid model. But if kids thought quarantine education meant getting to skip out on dress codes, they have a thing or two to learn. That’s because many school districts are still requiring their students to wear uniforms or obey dress codes just like they would if they were attending classes in-person.

Students are not enthused about toeing the line when it comes to their clothing (though, we suppose, at least they don’t have to wear shoes on Zoom). Most don’t even think the guidelines made sense when school was in session pre-coronavirus. Many of the rules that exist around student apparel are sexist, putting more restrictions on girls than boys when it comes to showing skin, which the adults in charge often claim is a “distraction.” Other schools have come under fire for racist guidelines around hair, especially dreadlocks.

What happens if you violate the oh-so-holy dress code in a distance learning setting? Well, probably not much. Teachers are overwhelmed enough as it is and aren’t likely to call students out. Principals and deans, however, have been harsher.

“They would tell people that wore something ‘inappropriate’ to take it off or stop their video,” a student named Alicia told TeenVogue. “If they didn’t change, they would [receive] a ‘cyber send out’ [that would kick them out of the Zoom,] which prevented many from getting information and help for our assignments. This created a space in which people would stay off the camera in classes, which made our teachers upset.”

So misbehaving in online school is punished by kicking you offline? Sweet!

While we understand the need for some kind of baseline for behavior so that students aren’t literally rolling out of bed and logging onto virtual discussions in their pajamas, requiring them to appear before a webcam in an ironed button-down, tie, and pleated pants seems excessive. In this strange “new normal,” students and teachers alike have enough to worry about (like that freshman asshole-in-training who crashes the Zoom homeroom blasting “WAP”) without adding fashion freak-outs to the mix.

Cover Photo: Emma Farrer (Getty Images)

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