Target: Deputy Principal Cherith Telford
Goal: Reprimand the principal who suggested that short skirts distract boys and create an uncomfortable environment for male teachers.
A school-implemented rule requires girls to lengthen their uniform skirts to below the knee, reportedly to avoid distracting boys and men. While the rule is not in dispute, the reasoning is. Demand an apology from the staff member who allegedly suggested that longer skirts would keep girls “safe” and prevent distraction.
A deputy principal reportedly stated that the dress code was necessary to “keep our girls safe, stop boys from getting ideas and create a good work environment for male staff.” Suggesting that girls are responsible for keeping boys and men in line is damaging and only encourages exploitation. Men, especially teachers, should be held responsible for their interactions with female students regardless of skirt length.
Sign below and demand an immediate apology for these damaging statements.
Dear Deputy Principal Telford,
Your reported statements regarding the school dress code are insulting to women and men. We urge you to apologize to the students and work toward empowering them all to interact appropriately, regardless of skirt length.
Telling girls that the female body is distracting and sexual, even in an assigned uniform, places unearned blame on their shoulders. Blaming girls for the actions of their teachers and male classmates is insulting and even dangerous. Male teachers should be held accountable for their interactions with girls and boys should be taught that they, too, are responsible for controlling themselves.
While we do not dispute the dress code, the reasoning behind it is unacceptable. We demand an immediate apology for this damaging statement.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: GaborfromHungary