Student addresses school board claiming unfair policy


One-hundred-twenty people – including students, a teacher, a high school cook, and several community members – feel the athletic uniforms in some extracurricular activities at Mexico High School are in violation of the district's dress code. One student addressed the school board, at the regular meeting Tuesday night, to voice his concerns.
MHS student Jordan Henry – who recently collected 120 signatures on a petition he circulated among students, staff, teachers and the community – would like school officials to change the district's current dress code so that all activities and the uniforms of those activities, follow the same dress code required by the rest of the student body. The major areas to be affected would be sports teams – particularly volleyball, cheerleading, track, cross country and tennis – as well as all other extra-curricular events that apply.
The primary reasons Henry cites the board should support his proposition include:
• It's what the student body and the community wants.
• The standing policy is unfair and hypocritical to fellow students.
• A change in policy would increase school spirit and give students more respect for the rules and for the administration.
• Mexico High School would be a leader in morality among other schools.
Henry claims the skirts worn by cheerleaders are too short, offensive to some, and in violation of the district's current dress code – which states that the "length of the dress or skirt must be at least mid-thigh."
"By not following this, you are creating a divide among the students," Henry told the board. The volleyball outfits, particularly the spandex shorts, are also offensive he said. According to policy, "Biker shorts, tight shorts, shorts higher than mid-thigh, boxer shorts or shorts that look like boxer shorts as outerwear" are prohibited.
"There are certain days that athletes wear uniforms to school, usually on game days, and some of the uniforms are in violation and do not comply with the dress code required of the student body," Henry explained. "I'm lobbying to change the dress code for Mexico High School extracurricular activities. I believe the outfits should comply with the same dress code as the rest of the students."
Henry said it is not his intention to single out the cheerleaders or volleyball players, or ban them. He just believes all students should be subjected to the same rules. Henry claims many students elect not to participate in these sports simply because of the inappropriate attire. He cited similar situations at other schools outside the district, and noted that Mexico was reportedly the "most modest" in athletic wear compared to neighboring districts. He suggested purchasing more "modest wear" or changing the policy.
"I'm not calling for immediate action, but I feel it is something that can be accomplished in the next four-year rotation," Henry said. "Please be a leader (among area schools) and consider my proposal."
Henry approached both the high school administration and the superintendent prior to addressing the school board. Tuesday night, the board was presented with the 120-signature petition and agreed to take the matter under consideration.

Facts and figures
• There are 714 students in Mexico High School
• There are 45 teachers, four administrators in Mexico High School
• There are 12 cooks who work at the high school
• It was not revealed how many people were approached, or declined to sign the petition