by Isha Bhardwaj

The HB Dress Code:

  1. Shirts with a collar, sweaters, and knit tops, which may have small logos and/or designs, and that fully cover both shoulders
    2. Non-athletic zip or button hoodies with the hood worn down
    3. Hathaway Brown t-shirts or sweatshirts
    4. Cotton pants, dress pants, capris, or colored jeans
    5. Fingertip-length or longer skirts, dresses, or shorts
    6. Leggings under a fingertip-length or longer skirt or dress
    7. Shoes must be worn at all times

One of the most controversial rules at HB is the dress code. It’s a topic that is often discussed, as teachers almost constantly correct students about it ( and sometimes give points!). Most students don’t see the point of having it, arguing that it is outdated, useless, and sexist. A lot of them don’t really follow it anyway, since some parts of the dress code are pretty vague and open to interpretation ( what exactly is a “knit top”?).  Other parts don’t really make sense. How is wearing a nice sleeveless top worse than an HB T-shirt with colored jeans? The fingertip rule isn’t really fair either, since our arms are all different lengths.

However, the perspective of most teachers on the dress code is not well known. Are they in favor of it, or do they share the position of most students? I talked to Mr Ciuni to find out. His responses are paraphrased below.

Why do you think there is a dress code?

The mission of the school, as reflected in the motto, is learning for life. This includes learning to dress for occasions and learning the proper attire that’s appropriate for occasions, and I think the dress code does a good job of enforcing this.

 Do you believe the dress code is too strictly enforced?


Do you feel that the dress code limits self expression?  

No, it does not. As reflected in the several styles and colors of clothes girls wear every day, there are several ways to express yourself. You could also wear a necktie!

Is there a specific part of the dress code that you think is reasonable?

I think the dress code is reasonable across the board, and it’s mainly reasonable. However, I do recognize that shopping for women’s clothes is a complex thing. Wearing and finding male labeled clothing that could fit in with the dress code is much easier, which could make the dress code harder to follow for HB students.