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CAPRIO: Relaxed hoodie policy would benefit school

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Walking into my first hour almost everyday of the week, the first action I take is not to say hello to my friends or teacher, pull out last nights assignment, or look over notes needed for the class that day. Rather it is to pull off my hooded sweatshirt as fast as I can in order to avoid being reprimanded.

I understand that Rockhurst wants its students to dress for success, like they would if going to a job or an interview. But the fact is that Rockhurst isn’t a job. It is a high school. Students attend the school to learn the skills necessary to excel in college and eventually get a job, but Rockhurst itself is not a job and does not need to have an office-like dress code.

As a student at Rockhurst, I learn best when I am comfortable and in a more friendly, familiar school environment. A sweatshirt is one of the most comfortable and often worn items of clothing I own. If I could wear my hoodie to school, it would add a more familiar and comfortable aspect that would allow for a better learning experience.

There are also literally no negative outcomes to allowing students to wear to wear a sweatshirt in class. Students are not going to pay attention less or act out more because they are wearing a more relaxed article of clothing.

Looking around to other schools both public and private in the surrounding KC area, many of them allow students to wear sweatshirts. Allowing Rockhurst students to wear hoodies would not make them stand out negatively from the crowd.

If not allowing complete freedom to the students to wear sweatshirts, the policies regarding these items of clothes should be lessened to allow students to wear hoodies during non-class time periods like activity period, home room, or lunch. Currently if a student were to walk into the dining commons wearing a sweatshirt, or even just carrying one in his hands, he would be sent back to put the jacket into his locker before he is allowed to sit down and eat. That is a little ridiculous even to an outside observer.

In reality, the Rockhurst administration is working against itself. By enforcing such insignificant, superfluous rules, they are actively fostering resentment in students and undermining the discipline system. The more we are yelled at for wearing or even carrying hoodies, the less respect we will have for the discipline system itself.

The administration needs to more selectively choose rules to enforce. If they continue enforcing absurd rules like the ban on hooded sweatshirts, the student body will undoubtedly lose the respect that is essential in a relationship between students and administration.

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2 replies »

  1. Dress code standards correlate with the standards that the administration sets in ever other aspect of this school. Downgrading the dress code standards would in turn downgrade the rest of the standards at this school. When we become too relaxed and care free, we become arbitrary and lack production. I ecourage the author of this peice to be open to growth in his ways of dress. That is what this school is about.

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  2. The issue of dress code can easliy be solved with a simple school comparison. I am sure that many Rockhurst students are familiar with Pembroke High School, which is another Kansas City private school. Pembroke serves as an accurate contrast to Rockhurst becouse it has not implemented any kind of strict dress code for its students to follow, opposed to the adamant sweatshirt policy of Rockhurst. Both Rockhurst and Pembroke have average SAT scores hovering near the mid to low 600’s, with no substantial differences in scores regarding specific categories. The key difference in the academic comparison of the two schools comes in regard to the percentage of National Merit Scholar Semi-finalists per graduating class. In 2013 roughly 5 percent of the Rockhurst graduating class achieved the distinguished honor of National Merit Scholar Semi-finalist. Generally speaking 5 percent is quite impressive, but we fall short to Pembroke’s 9 percent. The point being, THERE IS NO CORRELATION BETWEEN STUDENT PRODUCTIVITY AND DRESS CODE.

    So to anyone whose shares the same opinion as Mr. “Senior”, who has expressed his belief that a lack of dress code will reduce our fine institution to anarchy, to not be so closed minded to the policy shift proposed by the more than competent Mr. Caprio. Honestly the opinion of Mr. “Senior” should enrage the Rockhurst student and faculty body becouse he is suggesting that we, the community of Rockhurst, are unable to handle the daunting task of carrying a sweatshirt about the halls. He is stating that if we were allowed to carry or wear a sweatshirt, we would be “arbitrary” , that we are a hoodie away form uttter scholastic destruction.

    I am here to say that we are not a hoodie away from academic incompetence, we are not nearly arbitrary. If Pembroke can manage equal SAT scores and more Merit Scholars, then I am more than positive that we can survive an easing of dress code.

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