Saturday, March 24, 2012

Teach me about the internal logic of Catholic school dress codes

Thursday was a day to break records and rules. With the temperature in the GTA within a smidgen of an all-time high, students at St. Mary Catholic Secondary School were excited to wear shorts on one of the few days of the year they could ditch their uniforms.

But around 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, vice-principal Paul Perron’s voice crackled from the speakers: no shorts, no khakis and no ankle socks on Thursday.

The article focuses on the shorts ban and the hypocrisy and asshattery of banning shorts on a civvies day when it's going to be hot out, but I'm more interested in why on earth they'd ban khakis and ankle socks. Within the school's internal logic, what on earth would their reason be for banning khakis or ankle socks?

Khakis are conservative, non-trendy long pants that are maybe a shade dressier than jeans, and in fact many schools and other organizations include khakis as part of their uniforms. I'm not even sure if teenagers today would wear khakis unless they're trying to dress more grownup. (They were trendy when I was a teenager, but now even my peers don't wear them that much and I feel a bit frumpy and out of it when I wear them.)

The kind of socks being worn are utterly irrelevant if you're already wearing long pants (which they must be, given the prohibition on shorts), so I cannot fathom why the administration even thought of this.

I'm not saying the shorts ban is reasonable, but it's not an uncommon rule for a dress code so, apart from the act of declaring a civvies day and then giving it a dress code, it doesn't particularly surprise me. But the ban on khakis and ankle socks completely baffles me and I can't even begin to speculate what their intention is. Any ideas?


Anonymous said...

I went to Catholic school and remember these days well. I remember the 'rules' about what to wear and they were pretty standard... no short shorts, low cut shirts, bare midriff's... ya know, the 'basics'. I am 100% certain there was no rules about sock lenght. That strikes me as beyond ridiculous, especially since, as you said, they'll all be in pants anyway!

Very odd.

laura k said...

From where I sit, Catholic schools appear to have no logic whatsoever.

impudent strumpet said...

No, but I assume they think they do. I was hoping someone might google their way over and explain.