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LAUSD reexamines dress codes

A group of students congratulate each other after reading their 'A' Level grades.
A group of students congratulate each other after reading their 'A' Level grades.
Bruno Vincent/Getty Images

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The Los Angeles Unified School District recently asked 160 of its schools to review their dress code enforcement policies after a student who refused to cover up her spaghetti straps was removed from class.

LAUSD dress code policy states that “Students may not be disciplined or removed from class as a consequence for wearing ‘inappropriate’ attire. But it does allow for a student to briefly leave class to change clothes.

Individual schools are tasked with determining and implementing their own dress codes. According to the LA Times, “On a hot fall day, a student named Mary “James” Salazar wore a red dress with thin shoulder straps to Grand Arts, the school’s informal name. She says she was told her clothes were too revealing and distracting, and she refused to wear a sweater from lost and found that was offered to her, or to ask her mother to bring clothes.

As a result, James said she spent most of the day in the office instead of learning in class.”

Classmates of James’ like Angel Fabre have been moved to organize groups like “The Separation of dress and education.”

In a recent interview she told the LA Times, “I should be worrying about my test that I have in the next period, I should be worrying about a dance class, not my body or if somebody is going to attack me or harass me for it."

Bul-2549.1- Student Dress Codes- Edit-12!18!09.Doc (PDF)_1 (1)


Eugene Hernandez, Administrator of Operations, Los Angeles Unified School District

Jo Paoletti, professor of American studies at the University of Maryland and an expert on gender differences in American fashion