Students at the U.K. Simon Langton Girls’ Grammar School are upset about the new dress code that officials have put in place.
According to the Telegraph, the dress code bans sleeveless shirts. Students call the new dress code “oppressive and demeaning.”
Some sixth form students – who are roughly 16 to 18 years old – have even started a petition.
The student who started the petition, Maddi Lane, explains that when a girl wears a sleeveless shirt, she’s not ‘trying to flaunt anything.’ Lane explains that all the students want is to ‘feel comfortable in a school environment.’
The petition reads, “Many of the students in the SLGGS sixth form have disagreed with the dress code rule that states girls should not wear strappy or sleeveless tops that reveal the shoulders. This rule encourages the disturbing sexualization of young girls’ bodies, most of which are underage.”
Dr. Matthew Baxter presides both the girls’ school as well as the Simon Langton Boy’s School in Canterbury. Baxter told the Telegraph that “both Langton schools will ensure that the same dress code applies to all students within their sixth form.”
The stigma surrounding women and their clothes is a widespread problem right now. But unfortunately, restrictive dress codes like these don’t end with schools – they’re common in the work place as well. And that’s why the girls are so determined to make a change.
“It is our job to change the oppressive and demeaning standards that women are forced to abide by,” the petition reads, “or nothing will change in the future.”