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Texas school district bans hoodies and dresses as part of 'Back for the Future' dress code

The effort by the Forney Independent School District covers every stitch of clothing from the top of students' now-unhooded heads down to their shoelaces.

A school district near Dallas instituted restrictive new dress codes, barring students from wearing hoodies, dresses or clothing with "stripes, checks, lettering, wording, or other designs."

The Forney Independent School District's new "Back for the Future" attire guidelines appear to be a play on the hit 1985 science fiction comedy "Back to the Future," when a teen played by Michael J. Fox travels in time to end up in the same school with his parents in 1955.

A video posted on the district's website on Wednesday features a child explaining how dress codes are no different than rules faced by adults who are forced to wear specific clothes to work.

Superintendent Justin Terry also appeared in the video to reiterate how school children should be trained in these "future workforce skills that we want to impart on our kids."

"So we are so exited to reset this bar with you, with our parents, with our community members, with all of our business partners, as we work together to take our schools, our classrooms back for the future of our kids," he said.

Forney High School in Forney, Texas
Forney High School in Forney, Texas.Google Maps

The guidelines for the 12,000 students call shirts, blouses, turtlenecks, sweatshirts, vests, sweaters and outerwear "acceptable" as long as they are of solid colors.

The laundry list of "unacceptable" garments and looks include:

  • Visible stripes, checks, lettering, wording, or other designs.
  • Sleeveless.
  • Thermal type shirts. T-shirts. Zippered shirts or blouses.
  • Hooded sweatshirts or outerwear.
  • Hats, caps, bandanas, or other non-religious head coverings worn inside the school building.
  • Leather, suede, vinyl, corduroy, and denim materials (not including outerwear).
  • Baggy-style legged slacks.
  • Holes in clothing.
  • Cargo or Carpenter style pants.
  • Soccer or boxer style shorts, wind shorts/pants, athletic shorts/pants, sweat shorts/pants, spandex (except in PE/Athletics, Cheer, or Drill classes only).
  • Dresses.
  • Overall pants, overall shorts, overall jumpers, and coveralls.
  • Leather, suede, vinyl, corduroy, and denim materials; brads or studs.

The district will also bar students' clothes that are too tight or too baggy: "Clothing can be no more than one size larger than the student’s measurements; nor may the garment be too tight."

The codes go from the top of students' now-unhooded heads down to their toes, in perfectly matched shoes.

"Shoes must be a matching pair," the guidelines say. "Shoelaces must be a matching pair."

Administrators are also expected to examine clothes beneath the surface, as sufficient "underclothing is required" and undershirts "must be one of the approved solid colors, with no printing or designs," according to the 7-page guideline.

A district official could not be immediately reached for comment on Friday.