Relax:Dress, dance just signs of the times | SteamboatToday.com
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Relax:Dress, dance just signs of the times

How do you put restrictions on the changing times? The concerns of parents and community members about dancing and dress at the school dances and the Sailors dance team have led to many discussions among the teens, parents and community members at the high school this week.

According to PIC (Principal Information Committee) members, there was a lot of talk in the community about what is going on at the dances, including provocative dress and dancing –especially by the girls. The concern is that the girls are getting a bad reputation in the community.

I am reminded of the movie “Footloose,” and the students’ fight to have a senior prom despite the concerns of the community that dancing leads to sexual behavior. The senior prom had to be held outside the city limits, hidden from the community’s judgmental eyes.



Fashion is a big part of a high school student’s life, and as the years have gone by, fashion has changed. How can one restrict the changing times, and universal fashion?

High school math teacher Ronald Schnackenberg agrees that students are dressing more provocatively these days.



“I see the motions young people go through at dances and we wonder why they have such a problem with morality, but it’s on television and it’s in the media” he said. “Society is moving in the direction of ‘anything goes.'”

However, students do not look at their dress as a way to project their sexuality, it’s all fun and games, the dress and the dancing.

“It’s fun to dress up like a movie star, do our hair, wear crazy clothes and act like a movie star every once in a while,” said junior Jill Wernig.

“I wear what I wear because it’s in style and I like it, not because it is provocative,” said senior Laci Henning.

“Modern dance is provocative in itself, and is just a sign of the times,” said teacher Joan Allsbury.

As for the adult community members and their idea that teens are dressing and dancing too provocatively, they have to turn on the television, or open a magazine to see that it is normal — then have an open mind.

“Girls are just wearing the style. If you categorize or stereotype people for the clothes that they wear, it’s just like stereotyping people for their color,” said Dex Shorter, a high school teacher.

“If the community is that judgmental to stereotype girls by what they wear to a dance, then they are living up to the expectations of a stereotypical, judgmental society,” said senior Cori Hands.

What did the parents of the “hippies” think about their children, or the 1920s flappers and their “anything goes” attitude? If all that is at stake is a bad reputation, isn’t that normal for all teens, no matter the generation?

As for the consideration of restrictions at the high school dances, it will only lead to less participation at the school functions.

“I’ll just go to Denver and go to the clubs or go to a party,” said Henning.

The parents with the concerns about the “bad reputations” of some girls should deal with their problems at home, rather than make it a school-wide restriction.

“If parents have a problem with the way their kids dress, that’s a problem that should be dealt with at home,” Hands said.

Restrictions cannot be made on the changing times, nor could they have been made on the previous generations. Students should be able to act like teens, dress in style and attend safe school functions. Our actions are not intended to offend, or project sexual images, we are living in changing times.

Joleen Fuller is a senior at Steamboat Springs High School and an intern at the Steamboat Pilot.


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