Editorial Board | Echo
At the start of the semester, new dress code posters were added to the Kesler Student Activities Center (KSAC).
According to Kelle Maloney, KSAC student activities director, these posters are present to act as a reminder of the dress code, not a notification of a change in it.
"As the school year approaches, there's incoming freshman coming in, and sometimes, you know, we just need those gentle reminders, when the weather is warm and we're wearing a little less clothing, that we're a Christian community and basically adhering to our Life Together Covenant (LTC) and our mission statement at Taylor," Maloney said.
Rather than issuing a written reminder for incoming freshman and transfer students, Maloney said that the visual representation of the dress code policy would be a quick display of facility expectations.
With this in mind, The Echo Editorial Board decided to discuss the dress code in the KSAC.
Dean of Students, Title IX Coordinator and Community Life Committee Leader Jesse Brown said the dress code was representative of many of the Christian values outlined in the LTC. More specifically, Brown cited the student handbook's statement on the University dress code.
"The spirit of this standard of dress would incorporate the following Biblical principles: desire to glorify God in everything, responsibility to fellow Christians, consideration of others and sensitivity that we not offend in any way and reflection of our personal standards as 'new creatures in Christ,'" the handbook says.
The handbook also sets overarching guidelines about physical displays of modesty across campus. For example, bare midriffs are prohibited aside from swimming for men and women and some athletic activities for men. This is reflected in the KSAC's dress code visual, which displays several prohibited shirt styles that show midriffs.
In addition the dress code's faith basis, both Brown and Maloney pointed to its practicality, saying that gym dress code is a reasonable expectation that most collegiate and public facilities hold for their members.
As an Editorial Board, we agree having a dress code is an appropriate standard for living in a community. For both men and women, dressing modestly is an avenue to honor God and others.
However, the Editorial Board believes the dress code should be more clearly expressed and discussed. While the graphic is fairly clear on the permissible silhouette of clothing, other factors are completely unaddressed. For example, short length, tightness of clothing and sheerness are never referenced. To fully affirm the KSAC's dress code, there would first have to be a clear outline of what is and isn't allowed.