Dress Code Controversy – Flip Flops in High School?
There are many issues facing students in today’s high schools, and most of them are academic in nature. Students must be sure, in the first place, that they sign up for the right classes. More and more, the classes that students chose to enroll in are having a bigger and bigger impact on what sort of schools are interested in having them attend once they go beyond the high school level. That means that both students and teachers have to worry about fitting more material, and more advanced material, into the same amount of time that they used to use to cover things that were not nearly so complicated, challenging, and involved.
However, even though education in general always presents new problems that are directly academic in nature, there are still age old issues that always seem to rear their heads no matter what else is going on. They might even be comforting, because they are so reliable, if they were not a nuisance. Once such issue is the problem of dress codes. The problem of how students are allowed to dress in general is a pretty big can of worms, but even one aspect in particular, that of footwear or, in particular, flip-flops, is a very heated debates.
Especially in warmer climates, many school-age students love to wear flip-flops. They wear them when they hang out with friends, they wear them at the beach, and at the mall, and so on. So why should they not be able to wear them in school? There are two main arguments.
On the one hand, many people say that students should not be allowed to wear flip-flops because they are dangerous to students’ health. That might seem like an overstatement, but it can be all too true. When hundreds of students pour into the hallways between classes and struggle to get to class on time, they can be walking through quite a traffic jam. If many of those students are wearing loose footwear, it is easy for one person to step on the back of another person’s shoe. That injure the students foot or, worse, it could knock the student down. If one person falls in a tight pack of quickly moving people, all of whom are carrying books and are in a rush, there is potential for serious injury.
The other argument is that it is okay for them to wear flip-flops. High school students are becoming adults, and part of being an adult is taking responsibility for your actions and making decisions for yourself. If wearing flip-flops causes some specific issues, then those need to be addressed, but instead of assuming some kind of terrible doomsday scenario, why not see how it actually plays out?
There may not be a one-size-fits-all answer to this problem, but it is probably best to take the time to find a balance between erring on the side of caution, and letting these young adults make decisions for themselves. After all, wouldn’t it feel strange to tell adults they couldn’t wear flip-flops if they wanted to?