The ban on teachers’ wearing of skirts raises controversy

VietNamNet Bridge – Vietnamese now spend a lot of time discussing about what female teachers can wear when going to school.

When the 2013-2014 academic year began, the Headmaster of the Viet Trung School in Quang Binh province released a document prohibiting female teachers to go to class in skirts.

When the 2013-2014 academic year began, the Headmaster of the Viet Trung School in Quang Binh province released a document prohibiting female teachers to go to class in skirts.

Le Van Ha, the headmaster of the school, explained that the regulation aims to ensure the reasonable conducts and behaviors teachers need to have in the schooling environment.

Ha said that a teacher of the school once fell into an embarrassing situation, when her skirt turned up over in the class. The trouble made the students burst into laughter, while both the teacher and the students could not continue the lessons in the usual way.

Ha also said that the ban has been supported by the teachers of the school. “They have been obeying the new regulation and I have heard no disagreement,” he said.

However, a lot of female teachers of the school do not think so. They affirmed that the story about a teacher whose dress turned up over in the class was just a pure fabrication. As ceiling fans were installed in all the classrooms, the dresses must not blow up.

A teacher complained that the ban is applied to all kinds of skirts, from long dresses to short skirts, thus putting inconvenience to teachers.

She affirmed that such a document should no have been issued. “We are the teachers and we understand that our clothing must be suitable to the schooling environment,” she said. “I can say for sure that not one of us wears miniskirts or sexy clothes when going to school.”

The teacher also complained that the ban would, to some extent, affect the teachers’ lives, because they would have to spend money on buying more shirts and trousers.

It is quite a surprise that the regulation set up by a school in the central region has become the topic for discussion all over the country.

Luong Van Xuan, a reader, applauding the decision of the school’s management board, said that the humanitarian regulation should be applied to all the schools in the country.

Bo Cong Anh, a female student of a high school, said in her city, high school students and teachers all wear the Vietnamese traditional long dresses to school. She believes that skirts should not be seen at high schools, where students wear uniforms, while traditional long dresses prove to be the best solution.

Discussing about the clothing style for the schooling environment, Nguyen Thi Huong from Lai Chau province said in the locality, teachers bear much stricter regulations. They must not have their hair dyed, must not go to school in skirts, jeans and shirts with no collar.

Though Huong calls these the “odd and extraordinary” regulations, she and other colleagues only have one choice – obeying the rules, or they will lose their jobs.

While the clothing style for female teachers is under the hot debate, Doan Duc Liem, Director of the Quang Binh provincial education and training department, when asked about the issue, commented that this should be the topic for “idle gossip”, while he does not care about this.

A parent also said he cannot understand why people waste their time on the useless discussion. “What I care is the teaching quality and the teachers’ conducts. I don’t care what they wear, if the clothing is not too ridiculous,” he said.

Tien Phong

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