School Committee to hold final reading on new dress code

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — The Portsmouth School Committee will hold a final reading of the new district-wide dress code at Tuesday’s meeting. View the agenda and new dress code here.

Thanks to the activism of two fifth-grade girls, the Portsmouth School Committee began addressing a district-wide school dress code this past June after students raised concerns about “body shaming” and restrictions targeting girls only.

“Many of the girls in the Portsmouth Middle School community have an issue with the way we’re being treated,” wrote Ava and Sophia, students at Portsmouth Middle School, on Change.org. “We feel that our school wide dress code is showing inequality to our young women. In social studies we are being taught about racial prejudice, and we know that prejudice based on sexism is just as important, and is just as huge of a problem.”

Two girls began a petition on Change.org to change Portsmouth’s dress code. Just a few days later, the superintendent of schools responded.

You can read the entire story here:

Portsmouth schools to address ‘sexist’ dress code

On Tuesday, the Portsmouth School Committee will meet and conduct a final reading of the district’s new dress code, which reads as follows:

Business A. Student Dress Code Policy - JICA Final Read

The new dress code removes previous language about the length of skirts and shorts.

For example, the former dress code required shorts to be “…long enough so a student can extend their arm and make a fist at the hem line” and skirts to be “…long enough so a student can extend their arms and the hem line touches at least their fingertips.”

You can read the former dress code below.

The School Committee meeting will begin at 7 p.m. at Portsmouth High School. A new teacher reception will be held at 6:30.

View the entire agenda below:

9.10.19 Hyperlinked Agenda

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