Author Gail Anthony Greenberg attributes the change to a societal trend empowering kids to make their own decisions. "These days, we give children more latitude," she added. As a result, many rabbis, administrators, parents and even bar mitzvah party vendors take preventative measures to quell chatty, restless or precocious preteen guests from being disruptive at bar mitzvah ceremonies and receptions.
The Tuesday after Labor Day found many kids returning to school from summer vacation. While those at Beverly High showed up in summer tan-revealing tanks and short shorts, at Milken Community High School, neither tank top, nor short shorts, nor T-shirt could be seen.
Milken has implemented a stricter dress code this year, and just three weeks in, it has demonstrated its intention to enforce it. Call it a throwback to the 1950s, with teachers doing double-duty as fashion police, going as far as putting rulers to girls' skirts to ensure hems aren't too short.