Last week, a group of 17 boys marched up and down Cardiff’s Whitchurch High School’s hallways chanting “We want to wear shorts."
The only catch? They did this while wearing skirts.
In the midst of a heat wave in the United Kingdom, 15-year-old Tyrone Evelyn and his friends took drastic measures to feel more comfortable in school. Whitchurch High School’s dress code strictly enforces that male students wear pants, regardless of the weather, and shorts are firmly not allowed. The school's dress code reads: "Trousers are compulsory for boys and optional for girls. These must be full length and plain black."
"Over the last few days I’ve had a few headaches and skin irritations because I’ve been too hot," Evelyn told The Daily Mail. "Girls can wear skirts, so I don’t see why we can’t wear shorts."
Attempting to avoid further distress from the high temperatures, the male students have tried various alternatives to their trousers: wearing their gym shorts—that are actually decorated with the school’s official logo—rolling their pants up to a cropped style, and even tailoring their preexisting pants to a more comfortable three-quarter length.
The group planned their protest via Facebook, plotting to avoid suspicion by bringing skirts in their school bags and changing in the bathrooms. They then proceeded to protest the school’s dress code by vocalizing their concerns until their march was directed toward the headmaster’s office, in which they were forced to return to their full-length trousers.
While the boys are still stuck wearing long, heavy trousers in the sweltering heat despite their protests, Headmaster Huw Jones-Williams says, “People have obviously indicated that they would want to wear shorts. We are always keen to listen to our students.” The boys avoided punishment and plan to take further action by writing to their student council with hopes to change the male dress code for next summer. [Daily Mail]