Local schools put restrictions on "sexy" prom dresses

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Several Lowcountry schools have adopted prom dress guidelines banning what may be considered provocative attire.

"I'm ecstatic. I can't believe I got asked by the sweetest guy," said Haley Smith.

It's Haley Smith's first time shopping for prom, and she knew she wanted to choose her dress carefully.

"There are some people who dress too revealing," Smith said.

Dresses on promgirl.com bear cleavage, cut outs, high slits, low backs and body hugging styles. Marie Dorrell says those styles wouldn't be allowed at some local schools. She helps girls find the best dress for them.

"The restrictions vary so much. Sometimes it's not too low cut in the back or you're not showing your midriff or some of them you have to have straps on the dress. It varies by school," Genealogy Boutique Manager Marie Dorrell said.

Local boutiques have several styles to offer, but one school says if your dress is not appropriate, they won't let you in the prom.

Students at James Island Charter High sign a form outlining the rules and what is acceptable attire. If they don't comply it says, "Parents will be notified if the students have been asked to leave the dance."

"We want them to understand no matter where you go, there is going to be some kind of dress code. It says black tie only, you need to know what that means, and need to know when you are outside in a community you want to be respectful of those rules and regulations and expectations," Principal Robert Bohnstengel said.

The principal says they've never had to turn anyone away because of attire. Teens like Haley say dress codes should be in place for those who choose styles that are too revealing.

"It doesn't make you shine. You need to dress in a way you are age appropriate," she said.

The dress experts at Genealogy Boutique said if there is a style that is too revealing, often times girls will get them altered or modified to cover up more, and some will wear a shawl to ensure that it meets the dress code.

Schools say if students have questions about the appropriateness of their dress,they should ask a school administrator or prom advisor.

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