Our group’s civic action is to tackle Terra Linda High School’s current dress code and work to amend it to better fit the needs of the students themselves. We came across the idea of this specific policy change because all of us found that the student body is continuously being judged by the administrators and teachers for how they are dressing and expressing themselves. More specifically, females feel that they are being targeted specifically for their dress, whereas males are seen as having much more lenient rules for dress code. Also, there are constant complaints that girls are being viewed as “distractions” to the learning environment because of their clothing, and we felt that is an example of the objectification of women. On another note, we are interested in seeing if TL has any students affiliated with gangs, because if not, we believe that the rule against hat-wearing and jerseys should be absolved.
For this project, we are taking many civic actions to ensure our goals are met. First, we created a survey for TL students to fill out. We talked to teachers about the issue and handed them the surveys to hand out during class. In the survey we included questions about gangs at TL and whether or not anyone feels like the dress code singles them out. The overwhelming consensus was that the dress code made many people feel violated and gangs are not a relevant problem at TL. Our next civic action is a meeting with the principal on the dress code at TL and our survey results.
For our dress code revision project, we hope to achieve a new dress code that better fits the students at TL by being equal for all genders and having a totally separate dress code from San Rafael High’s dress code due to the different issues our schools have. We want our dress code to make the young women at our school feel more comfortable and feel they are treated the same as the young men on our campus. As we are in the same school district as San Rafael High School, we also wish to pull away from them, and have a totally different dress code, because the code addresses situations that occur over there, but that do not exist over here at TL (i.e. gang affiliations). Through various steps like surveys, collecting data, showcasing this to the administration, we feel as if we have a powerful enough case to get this job done. The dress code at Terra Linda right now is not fair and we are trying to address this issue in order for it to fit all the different genders and body type of our students.