Thursday, 12 March 2009

Quick hit: Dances with sleeves

The junior dance dress code at Palmerston North Girls' High has provoked an article in the Manawatu Standard:
Young ladies who dare to show some shoulder at the Palmerston North Girls' High junior dance will not be tolerated.

A dress code for tomorrow's junior social event with Palmerston North Boys' High says dresses must have a sleeve, cannot be above the knee, and may not expose the back inappropriately.

This rule is being slated by parents of some Year 9 and 10 students, who say enforcing the strict code on young girls is ridiculous and old-fashioned.

But the school said the code is there to maintain an acceptable standard of attire and prevent girls from dressing "lavishly".

One mother, who did not want to be named, couldn't believe her daughter was not allowed to wear the same outfit she would wear to a family dinner. "I think it's ridiculous; it's very strict and old-fashioned.

Click through for the whole article.

I tend to think we do sexualise girls (and boys) very young these days, and a lot of that happens through fashion and clothing. That said, this does sound pretty over the top.

Black feather fascinator tipped to reader Azlemed for emailing this to me via Facebook.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Maybe the locals are a bit over-excited after Jono's comments last week?

I am a Palmerston North Girls High Old Girl, I remember a minor scandal when one of my classmates wore trousers to the 7th form prizegiving. The idea of banning sleeveless evening dresses seems equally out of touch of reality! In real terms I guess it means that dresses will have to be made especially.

Anonymous said...

above posted by katy

Julie said...

And sorry I forgot to put a title on this post!

Emma said...

This is crazy. The only lesson it can possibly teach anyone is that girls' knees, shoulders and backs are 'rude'. Also, it in no way stops girls from dressing 'lavishly'. I suspect the word they couldn't quite bring themselves to use was 'lasciviously'.

The ex-expat said...

Nobody puts baby in a corner!

A Nonny Moose said...

This reminds me of a recent conversation I had with a workmate about her 13 yo daughter's disco. The girls are not allowed tops that expose their cleavage, or wear mini skirts (they could wear mini skirts with tights).

When I asked what the dress code for the boys was, or what was expected of their behaviour at the dance, I got blank looks all round.

hungrymama said...

Oh man, I know if I was a teenage girl I would be trying very very very hard to find a dress that fit the letter of the rule and left nothing to the imagination all the same.

Giovanni said...

I'm with Emma: lavishly doesn't mean what they think it means. Which, coming from a school, isn't terribly impressive.

Azlemed said...

I thought lavishly was heaps of dollars etc... the whole thing is very typical of the two single sex schools here in Palmy. Boys high is known for its draconian rules, they stand boys down for having hair below their collars or send them to the hairdressers and bill the parents... sleeveless dresses are hardly inappropriate attire for girls at a dance.

At least though there is a dress code for the boys too...

M-H said...

Oh, Balmy Palmy. I lived there for most of the 90s. Nothing would surprise me about conservative thinking in that town. I was the chair of the Lesbian and Gay RIghts group, MALGRA, and there were times I despaired at the level of conservative thinking. And that was from the members! :)