When All Saints Catholic high school student, Madi Carty, arrived at school wearing ripped jeans, she didn’t think that it would be that big of a deal. But wearing ripped jeans turned into a suspension, which then spurred a protest by students.
While ripped jeans have grown in popularity in recent years, wearing them at school is quite simply unprofessional. That being said, school is not only a place to practice professional decorum, it is also a place for students to express their individuality. So the question remains, to rip or not?
Suspension may seem like an extreme repercussion for ripped jeans, but looking more closely, it’s not. The dress code clearly states that ripped jeans are not allowed. Carty broke the rules and therefore, suffered the consequences.
It is understandable that students want to express their individuality while they are at school but when the dress code states that ripped jeans are not allowed and you wear ripped jeans, there will be consequences.
High school is right before college or university and teachers try to get you prepared for post-secondary as soon as they can. Then post-secondary attempts to prepare students for the workforce.
All Saints High made the argument against ripped jeans stating that students would not show up to a job interview wearing them. The students, including Madi, replied that they are “just going to school,” and not a job interview.
Students may be going to school but school is supposed to prepare you for the real world. How are students representing themselves when they are wearing clothes that are ripped? Not professionally.
That is not to say that students should dress professionally every day. One cannot expect a 15-year old to wear a dress shirt and dress pants or a nice blouse to school every day. What the teachers are simply trying to say is that clothes should not be ripped because this is not acceptable in the world of work.
The way you represent yourself at work is different than the way youths represent themselves at school.
Going to school is an opportunity for students to express who they are. This self-expression is done in many ways, through the music that students listen to, their hair and fashion. Wearing ripped jeans is a way that girls, and even guys, express who they are. Jeans are being sold with rips already in them.
This could be because of celebrity influences. On Monday, September 28, 2015, NBC’s The Voice coach Adam Levine was wearing ripped jeans during the show. Other celebrities like Kanye West and the Kardashians also wear ripped jeans. Teenagers have always followed celebrity influences. Youth see their favourite celebrities wearing something and in turn, they go out and buy it.
Students wearing ripped jeans are not exposing any inappropriate body parts, like their breasts. If students were showing any inappropriate parts, the suspension would have more merit. Ripped jeans are simply showing parts of the students’ legs. Some may find that okay, others not so much.
While students are supposed to be expressing themselves at school, there is a time and a place. High school is supposed to be preparing students for their future. Ripped jeans should not be worn at schools because they are unprofessional.