“And sometimes it takes a grown man a long time to learn, just what it would take a child a night to learn” Billy Bragg – The Passion
Today the BBC ran this story. Chris Whitehead, a pupil at Impington Village College attended school wearing a skirt. His rationale? The weather was hot, school rules ban the wearing of shorts in hot weather, but, crucially, not skirts.
Chris Whitehead’s decision therefore, was logical and consistent with the school’s uniform policy. Of course, in protesting in this way the uniform policy of the school has been exposed as inconsistent.
The loophole in the school rules uncovered, he, appropriately came to school in a skirt. He apparently got some teasing, but he appears not to mind. The school, to its credit, praised the way Chris protested, and have decided to review their uniform policy. Maybe the school will, after all, rectify its inconsistency.
Uniforms are used by schools to signify gender (amongst other functions). Skirts are normally associated with femininity, as opposed to masculinity. Impington Village College probably felt it didn’t need to specify that only girls are expected to wear skirts. This article of clothing, hitherto unquestionably female, has been questioned, by a 12-year-old boy. Well done Chris.
Impington Village College may choose to react by specifying a skirt length (for girls) reaching to just above their ankles, thereby scuppering any pupil’s desire to stay cooler in the summer. However, lets hope they do the sensible thing and allow boys to wear shorts in the hot weather.