Should dress code be enforced on Nigerian campuses?

  • Dress Code by definition is a set of rules specifying the correct manner of dress while on the premises of an institution or specifying what manner of dress is prohibited.  It is a written, and more often, unwritten rules with regard to clothing. Over the past few years, the school Dress Code has become an increasingly common policy in many countries of the world. As opposed to the requirements of students to wear specific clothing in the form of uniforms, Dress Code provides guidelines through which students are allowed to wear any clothing that meets the school’s(or any institution’s) requirements, whether they pertain to colour, style or cut of the clothing.

    Consequently, School Dress Code is designed to create a certain admirable atmosphere in a school while providing students with a bit of freedom of expression through their wardrobe. Also, Dress Codes are created to provide general clothing rules and guidelines within which every student is expected to demonstrate discretion and good judgment. Like any other rules, it is the responsibility of every student to conform to the Dressing Code of their institution. Nevertheless, while many students applaud the demand of school Dress Codes as a way to ensure that they (students) are properly dressed, others question the importance or necessity of Dress Codes, they believe that it is a way of trampling upon their Fundamental Human Rights.

    Related: Pre-independence and post-independence Nigeria education

    Taking a critical look at this issue of Dress Code, one may also opine that Dress Codes should not be enforced on Nigerian campuses due to some reasonable factors. One of such reasons is financial capacity. If, for instance, certain form of Dress Code that is expensive is enforced, students from poor background may not be able to abide by it and this will be inhumane if such students are punished based on this. Another prominent factor is the issue of religion. Since the Nigerian Constitution allows freedom of religion, enforcing Dress Code (that is contrary to the teachings of some religions by schools that are also under the Nigerian Constitution) may cause serious religious crises.

    However, Dress Code carries along so many benefits. For instance, Dress Code promotes a more serious school atmosphere which ensures academic growth and development and also fosters good behaviour. In fact, Dress Code has been proven to enhance students’ achievement by encouraging them to concentrate more on their studies and less on their wardrobe. A de-emphasis on clothing through the enforcement of Dress Code can also save money for other productive uses like buying useful textbooks and attending productive workshops and seminars as there will be less or no pressure to keep up with expensive trends and fashions. Moreover, Dress Codes on Nigerian campuses can also help to reduce social conflict that may be associated with appearance. For instance, it can help in identifying cultists who will often put on different clothing from the normal accepted standard. Studies have also shown that a School Dress Code can help in eradicating or reducing, at least, the prevalence of certain bad behaviours that are often expressed through wardrobe such as violence and promiscuity.

    Related: The imperative of parental participation in education

    With the aforementioned benefits of Dress Code, one can safely opine that its advantages overshadow the disadvantages—and even some of the disadvantages can be avoided through proper planning. To this end, I will posit at this juncture that Dress Code should be enforced on Nigerian campuses. The Dress Code, however, should be relaxed; it should not be too strict so that that it will not lead to making life difficult for students. Students’ financial statuses as well as religious obligations should be taken into consideration when forming Dress Codes.

    Within the ambit of moderation and modesty, the Dress Codes should allow students to wear what they want leaving them with a sense of choice and expression. Enforcing Dress Codes is not synonymous to making decrees, so it should not be seen as a way of trampling upon students’ Fundamental Human Rights as some have opined. Rather it is a way of making sure that the rights are not abused. While students will always find a way of expressing themselves through clothing, imposing boundaries will prevent them from resorting to extremes that can sometimes lead to undesirable consequences such as mistaken identity, rape (through sexually provocative dressing), e. t. c. Dress Code is a way of teaching students the importance of a respectable appearance which is a lesson that can positively ensure self-respect and self-esteem, after all, one is addressed the way he/she is dressed.

    You may want to check out this article on why you should have a career in education.

No Stickers to Show


Recent Blogs

  • Now open - 10 scholarships for African students in 2020

    Posted Wed at 9:21 PM

    As an African student, no doubt, winning a scholarship award would make your academic journey somewhat easier. While some families and sponsors can afford tuition fees and foot the educational bills of their child/ward, others can’t really do this comfortably. How...

  • Kinds of information systems for different levels of management

    Posted Tue at 6:57 PM

    To run a business is to engage in a series of processes and activities that are interconnected to each other. These processes and activities must be coordinated in such a way that will facilitate smooth operation for the success and goal attainment of the organization a...

  • Historical development of the law of torts in Nigeria

    Posted Jan 19

    John Wigmore once said that ‘every institute and principle of law has a philosophy – as every object in the Sun has its attendant inseparable shadow.” We cannot possibly talk about the law generally without discussing the law of torts. The law of tort...

  • Here is why you need to detox

    Posted Jan 14

    Have you ever been to the hospital because you didn’t feel quite good, but after several tests, nothing seemed to be wrong with you? Perhaps it was a headache? Perhaps fatigue? Sometimes when you feel tired or sick, it doesn’t always mean that you need medi...

View All

Random Blogs

  • Education as a tool for social transformation

    Posted June 12, 2017

    If education is a key to success, for sure, it could be a doorway to social transformation. While societal change remains the most difficult thing to achieve, it is also the most important thing to aspire for and transform a society. To make the daunting process easier,...

  • Thoughts on tolerance

    Posted November 16, 2016

    Tolerance, according to, is “willingness to accept feelings, habits, or beliefs that are different from your own”. In a world filled with peoples of different religious doctrines, political ideologies, economic affiliations, sexual orien...

  • Naming in the Yoruba culture

    Posted December 19, 2016

    “What is in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name shall smell as well”—William Shakespeare The above quote by the renowned English poet/playwright, William Shakespeare, underplays the significance of names. It sees the relationship betwe...

  • Some 5 technology tools for healthy lifestyle

    Posted September 10, 2018

    Just like there's an app for everything these days, there seems to be a gadget for everything. In the past couple of years, some gadgets, tools and apps have flooded the world. Powered by technology, their sole purpose is to increase our wellness and performance.&n...

View All

(200 symbols max)

(256 symbols max)