Edit: the original Facebook post has been deleted. 

School dress codes may not be fair to everyone, but a majority of schools enforce one.

However, this set of rules may be too strict, especially when you are talking about one of the most remembered high school events that a student can experience. 

The prom. 

Prom and graduation are one of the few coming-of-age rituals that high school students still celebrate. It’s a major life event, similar to a 21st birthday, and everyone has a prom story – even if it’s the story of why they chose not to go

Or maybe why some have decided to have their own. 

A high school in Oxford, Alabama received some backlash across the country following a Facebook post that they made on Wednesday in regards to the upcoming high school prom. *The original Facebook post has since been deleted. 

In case you missed the post, here’s what they said:


“Prom will be here before we know it! Here are some reminders about the dress code and expectations for this event! 

If you have any questions there are examples and non-examples of appropriate dress on the OHS Student News Schoology Page. 

Further questions should be sent to Assistant Principal Jenny Dothard.”

In the post, there was an image that appears to be from a handbook of some sort. The section is called, “Prom Expectations and Dress Code.”

And while a lot of people had problems with the dress code regulations, there were some people that supported the Facebook post from Oxford High School Yellow Jackets. 

It’s not abnormal for a school to enforce a dress code. In fact, 93% of school districts across the country enforce a dress code or policies of some kind that affect what students can wear to school or school-sanctioned events, according to Education Week.  

But one paragraph set off alarm bells for many students and their parents, and it’s safe to say that this isn’t something you would normally see added to the dress code regulations. 

In the second paragraph of the “Prom Expectations and Dress Code” section that was shared on Facebook, it said:

“All dresses must be approved by Mrs. Dothard prior to March 6 (No exceptions). Email pictures to jdothard.oh@oxboe.com of YOU wearing your prom attire - Front and Back views. Keep in mind that if approved via email and the dress doesn’t meet dress code standards, then you will not be permitted to attend prom. Make sure that pictures reflect the best possible views. If you do not get pre-approved, then you will not be allowed to attend prom.”

It doesn’t exactly seem like the most appropriate way to handle the checks and balances of the dress code. I mean, I am not a parent, admittedly, but I can’t see myself supporting the idea that young high school girls should be emailing pictures of themselves “front and back views” that “reflect the best possible views” to someone in a position of power, like the high school principal. 

It just doesn’t sit right with me…and although this is happening in Alabama, it makes you wonder if schools in New York state will attempt to have a similar kind of crackdown. And would parents support this? Does it make you feel more safe to have these checks and balances, or does it just make you uncomfortable?

For me, I’d say I associate more with the latter, but I’ll let you decipher your feelings for yourself. 

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