The Right to Wear Dress Pants at Graduation

May 27, 2015

Paula Shea, a senior at Oakridge High School in Muskegon, wanted to wear dress pants to her high school graduation. When she was told she couldn’t, she did some research, found that requiring girls to wear dresses violates federal civil rights laws and the Constitution, and convinced her principal that she has a right to wear pants. Paula asked the ACLU of Michigan to help other young people like her who don’t want to be forced to choose their clothes based on outdated stereotypes about what is right for girls and what is right for boys. So in May 2015 we released a student toolkit, which includes a legal memo and sample letter students can use to challenge antiquated dress codes. 

(ACLU Attorney Miriam Aukerman and Legal Fellow Linda Jordan.)

To view the full 2014-2015 Legal Docket, click here.

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