students attending school dances will be held to stricter standards when it comes to attire and physical activity at the events, under new rules adopted for 2012-13.
Girls attending formal dances — Homecoming, Winter Formal and Prom — must adhere to rules that restrict the shortness, tightness and cuts of their dresses.
Specifically, the dress code states:
- Length: Long dresses are strongly recommended for Winter Formal and Prom. Female students may wear dresses that are not floor length provided the length of the dress does not exceed 4 inches above the top of the knee and is not excessively form fitting
- Neckline: Necklines on dresses may not at any point plunge drop/rest/go below the bust line; no excessive cleavage.
- Low Back/Backless: No dresses that drop/rest/go plunge below the height of the belly button on the back; no abdomen or torso may be exposed.
- Slits: Slits may not extend above the length of fingertips when the female's hands are at her side.
- Sheer Fabric: Any part of the dress comprised of sheer fabric constitutes the exposure of skin and can be used to enforce a dress standard violation.
- Undergarments: No undergarments may be exposed at any time.
Stevenson High School spokesman Jim Conrey said in the past, dance attire was regulated by the school’s general dress code. “This takes it to a deeper level,” he said.
The new guidelines, he said, were developed last spring by the Stevenson Leadership Advisory Council. Composed of presidents of more than 40 student clubs, the group meets monthly with Stevenson’s director of student activities to discuss topics such as school spirit and atmosphere, Conrey said.
“I think there was a general sense that things had to change,” he said of the new rules pertaining to dances. “They had just sort of reached a point to make sure the atmosphere changed and that there’s more decorum at these events.”
Students were made aware of the new rules, which were added to the 2012-13 co-curricular code, during orientation last month. Reminders are being handed to those who purchase tickets for the Sept. 22 Homecoming dance.
Administrators will enforce the dress code “based upon appropriateness and good taste. A student who fails to comply with these dress standards may receive disciplinary consequences and/or loss of privileges, including but not limited to denial of admittance or removal from the dance,” the policy warns.
School officials will also be on the lookout for public displays of affection, including “suitable dance moves,” per an addition to Stevenson’s behavioral code.
Students are expected to adhere to the following standards on and off the dance floor:
- No grinding.
- No bending over.
- No straddling legs; both feet must remain on the floor.
- No touching of breasts, buttocks, genitals or pressing up against one another in a manner that is inappropriate.
- No “making out” (overt and/or prolonged public displays of affection).
- Hands on waists or shoulders only.
Violators may be denied admittance or removed from the dance, the code states.
“The chaperones will have to be on guard. We’re hopeful that it’s not that big of an issue for students,” Conrey said.
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