Universal Images Group via Getty
Universal Images Group via Getty

33 local West Texas school districts received the following letter about dress code policies:

Dear Superintendent: We write to inform you that your school district’s dress and grooming code appears to contain provisions that were recently declared unconstitutional by a federal court in Texas. We ask that you revise your dress code to ensure that it conforms to federal law and does not contain any restrictions that discriminate against students based on sex, race, or religion.


The letter goes on to state the case of De’Andre Arnold versus Barbers Hill ISD on gender specific grooming codes which violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Where the court applied heightened scrutiny to this gender specific dress code and found that the district did not provide a sufficiently persuasive or important justification for imposing a hair-length requirement on male, but not female, students.

Contour by Getty Images
Contour by Getty Images

School districts were warned:

Your school district’s dress and grooming code appears to contain a hair-length requirement that applies only to male but not female students and is similar to the one the court struck down in Barbers Hill. As discussed below, this grooming restriction treats students differently on the basis of sex and is unconstitutional. This type of provision also leads to bias and discrimination against students on the basis of race and religion, and it conflicts with recent guidance updated this August by the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB), which cautions districts against imposing gender-specific grooming codes.

Those districts are:

Adrian ISD

Booker ISD

Bovina ISD

Bushland ISD

Canadian ISD

Channing ISD

Claude ISD

Darrouzett ISD

Farwell ISD

Follett ISD

Friona ISD

Groom ISD

Gruver ISD

Hart ISD

Hartley ISD

Hedley ISD

McLean ISD

Nazareth ISD

Panhandle ISD

Plemons-Stinnett-Phillips CISD

Pringle-Morse CISD

Shamrock ISD

Silverton ISD

Spearman ISD

Stratford ISD

Sunray ISD

Texhoma ISD

Turkey-Quitaque ISD

Walcott ISD

Wellington ISD

Wheeler ISD

White Deer ISD

Wildorado ISD

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