School's Ban on 'Crossdressing' Is Like Giving Bullies a Gold Star

high heelI've heard some nutty ideas for school dress codes over the years. No hoodies. No Uggs. No sneakers. No personality. But the Virginia school district that's debating a ban on "crossdressing" by students has just crossed into dangerous territory.

The Suffolk school board is talking about banning "clothing worn by a student that is not in keeping with a student’s gender." While they're at it, why don't they just say "hey kids, go ahead and pick on the kid who's different" while they're at it. After all, to put a dress code like this in place would put on record that a school is officially discriminating against kids based on some nebulous societal description of gender.

Advertisement

So much for rooting out bullying and helping teach kids that everyone is equal, huh?

Of course, Suffolk educators say they're trying to "protect" kids from bullies by keeping them from wearing clothes that might get them attacked. But what happened to simply policing the attackers? It would actually promote a positive environment in a school instead of dividing kids!

This is one of those tricky parts of being a parent. We want to teach our kids that people may make different choices from them, and sometimes that means a boy may prefer to wear clothes considered "feminine" by society or vice versa. We want to teach our kids that they need to be accepting and tolerant and embrace their peers ... just as we embrace their choices. We want them to know that the clothes a person wears are just a part of who they are.

But then people we depend on to help us lead our kids by example go ahead and put forth plans like this "crossdressing" ban that send our kids back years, decades even. How do we teach kids the bullies are the bad people if the school is protecting them and shaming their victims, punishing kids who are "different" by putting them into a box?

What do you think of this crossdressing ban?

 

Image via Public Domain Photos/Flickr

 

Read More >