Swedish Schools Inspectorate: English school must abolish dress code

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Swedish Schools Inspectorate: English school must abolish dress code
The Internationella Engelska Skolan in Täby. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

The Swedish Schools Inspectorate have given the Internationella Engelska Skolan (IES) in Täby until January 27th to abolish its dress code, stating that it limits students' individual freedoms.


The Schools Inspectorate initiated an inquiry after reports of strict dress codes at IES in Täby. In interviews, students told inspectors that they were not allowed to have their bra straps on show, wear low-cut tops or wear skirts or shorts shorter than "a student's fingertips when standing with their arm by their side and fingers straight".

Those who did not follow the rules were given warnings, with students telling inspectors that the rules affected girls more than boys, newspaper Dagens Nyheter (DN) reports.

DN reports that during a presentation, school leadership went through a dress code stating, among other things, that students were not allowed to wear a certain type of leggings, and that trousers should be high-waisted as students were not allowed to show their hips or underwear.

The newspaper also reports that some girls said they were forced to buy different clothes so they could be used at school and that they used different items of clothing in their free time.


According to the school's headteacher, school leadership has never implemented a specific dress code, although the previous leadership was "stricter" on clothing, which may have affected the environment at the school.

However, the School Inspectorate's assessment of the situation is that the school's rules in practice mean that students are not allowed to wear certain clothes. This goes against Sweden's skollagen or 'school law', which states that schools have a mission to convey the importance of an individual's right to freedom and integrity.

IES in Täby has until January 27th to show the Schools Inspectorate evidence that the dress code has been scrapped.


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james_62d6336f596db 2022/12/06 13:51
Personally I feel that children should be in uniform at school. Reduces bullying when certain families can't afford the latest designer clothing that other kids have, for example. There are plenty of opportunities to express ones "freedom" later when they actually understand what freedom means. Short skirts that are no more than a belt are not appropriate for a place of study - a school is not a nightclub. Sweden is becoming far too soft.

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