North Little Rock High School Dress Code Causes Tension Between Students and Staff

Gisselle Ellington, Feature/News Story Editor

On August 16, 2021, school officially started  for North Little Rock High School with rules of the previous dress code being further implemented than last year.

To the school staff and the principal, the dress code is necessary, but to many students it’s biased with roots in sexism and racism. Recently many people have spoken out about the issue.

“It’s very objectifying towards more developed people and taller people,” says Jordan Bethel, a sophomore at North Little Rock High School, who has been protesting against the dress code since she was just a freshman. “Some people don’t even get dress coded.”

But, according to Dr. Saint-Louis, this is all false. “I feel like it’s fair and maybe we can get some more student’s input next time that we approve the dress code,” she says. When asked if she believes the dress code is rooted in racism and sexism she replies, “I would disagree with that but I would say that as the educators in the building we have to be the ones who are making sure we approach the dress code fairly and equitably.” 

Though some might argue the school dress code is strict, there have been some changes made to the dress code this year on the issue of closed toed shoes, which shows that

the dress code is still very much open for changing. Also according to staff, students have previously served on the committee that decides on the school’s dress code policy.

North Little Rock High School students aren’t the only students in the state who have protested against the dress code. On Monday, August 23, students from Northside High School in Fort Smith also protested against the dress code. 

According to Northwest Arkansas’s Channel 5 News, the Fort Smith Public School District was contacted for comment but, due to fear of speculation, they would be holding all comments.

Students here at North Little Rock High School are wearing and putting up flyers to protest the dress code.

“I think the flyers are a great start for the protest and they all really portray a great message which is one of the main goals we’re trying to achieve,” says Christiana Davis, a junior.

The principal has also recently sent out a survey asking about student’s opinions on the dress code. As of right now, the dress code debate is ongoing.