Mrs. Bredenhof began her talk about the school dress code with an explanation of why Credo has a dress code in the first place. It is not a measure of modesty, rather, its purpose is to outline what is appropriate in the particular setting we find ourselves in—school.
When we talk about modesty, there are a couple of key points we need to remember. First of all, if a guy struggles with disrespectful thoughts towards a girl, that’s on him. We cannot shift the blame onto girls for this. Girls, that doesn’t make it okay to dress immodestly! We need to consider what the Bible says about modesty. Paul says in 1 Timothy 2:9 that we should wear ‘respectable apparel’, and Peter says in 1 Peter 3:4 that we must put on ‘a gentle and quiet spirit’. Jesus described himself in this way, when he said that he is ‘gentle and humble in heart’ (Matthew 11:29). The world tells us to value external beauty, but God tells us to value internal beauty. Outward modesty will flow out of pure inner motives.
Getting to back to the dress code, Mrs. Bredenhof outlined a number of different dress codes that exist in various jobs and cultures throughout our world (e.g. a construction worker’s dress code is very different from a waiter’s). Credo’s dress code is a result of parental expectations and is a pretty standard school dress code. There are certain things we take a hard line on, and others that we have some flexibility with, where discretion is needed. Sometimes it’s difficult to find appropriate clothing that fits the dress code (e.g. shorts for girls), but with a little extra effort, it really is possible! Some people may disagree with certain elements of the dress code, but with a wide range of opinions out there, it’s impossible to please everyone and so a peaceable balance must be sought. Should leggings be banned? Should hats be allowed? As a community, we will likely never be in total agreement about things like this. Instead, let’s all aim to be respectful in the way we dress and understand that living in community involved working together towards reasonable compromise.
- Do you understand why the school has a dress code? Do you agree with those reasons?
- Parents: If you work out of the home, what are the dress expectations at your place of employment?
- What do you like about the dress code? Are there things about the dress code you would like to see changed? Why?
- How do you feel about school uniforms?
- We are constantly bombarded with images of immodesty and worldly ‘ideals’. How does that affect you?
- What does it mean to have ‘a gentle and quiet spirit’ (1 Peter 3:4)?