Public Schools Policy: Do You Have to Hide Your Tattoos?

Tattoos have always been around and now are getting increasingly popular, especially among the millennials. It is 2020 and stereotypes that people with tattoos are thieves and hooligans are just ridiculous. For all that, many schools have specific policies that describe how teachers and students should dress up and whether tattoos in school should be covered, and it all depends on a particular school and its rules.

These rules are understandable and even necessary to ensure there is consistency in how the staff and students represent the school. However, tattoos can become a problem for those who have it on visible parts of their bodies and they are unable to hide it. It makes them look for ways to cover them up or for schools with more relaxed dress codes. So do schools really care about visible tattoos?

Dealing with tattoos in schools

School is the time when you not only study hard and get everyone irritated with the question «Can you do my coursework for me?» but also the time of exploration and trying to find your true self. Often it is expressed in changes in student`s appearance: some people dye their hair, some dress in black and some get a tattoo. The majority of these people received their first tattoo before they turned 21 which means that they obviously attended schools with it.

What do people against tattoos say?

Argument #1. If a person decides to get a tattoo, he/she should not use permanent ink until they reach 21 as they will definitely regret it being a grown-up. There is some truth in it because during the last several years there was a significant increase in tattoo removal procedures mainly due to design meaning changes or poor execution. However, over 80% of tattoo owners are still satisfied with their ink expressions with many of the students among them.

Argument #2. It states that tattoos may impact your high school or college appearance and lead to negative results in interviews. Although many people when planning a tattoo put it into an easily concealed place, it is not going to be a problem soon. As Forbes says millennials will dominate the office space and employers will become increasingly tolerant to tattoos owners as the importance of the appearance in job search will be diminished. Companies will welcome tattooed students providing they have the right skill set so high schools should practice the same values.

In our tolerant world, it would be huge if someone has forbidden us something, especially such a little thing as getting a tattoo in school. This is just the same as piercings, the color of hair and even the color of skin. Tattoos help students to express themselves, so they should be allowed in public schools unrestricted, otherwise, they are banning our civil rights. Here is the story of Jessica: «My school in Virginia claimed that my tattoo was the violation of the school dress code but it was an expression of my religion and my church which was a federally-recognized organization».

Jessica insisted to wear it but the school administration denied her request thus violating her religion. Unfortunately, we still have to face it in many schools all over the country. Those who say that school is a place to learn are wrong: it is also a place to find yourself and your interests in an artistic, academic or athletic way. That is why students have to stand up for their rights to have their tattoos visible in public schools.