As we head towards the end of May, there are a few tell-tale signs that summer is on the way. The sun sets later, the temperatures gets higher, and schools and office workers switch over to the lighter, breezier uniforms for the warmer months to come.

One high school in China may have gone a little overboard in its uniform design, though, as it seems to have given priority to keeping cool rather than keeping students’ underwear hidden.

The high school, located in China’s northeastern Hebei Province, recently distributed this year’s summer uniforms to its students. The uniforms consist of a plain polo shirt and a pair of navy sweat pants, which is pretty standard as far as Chinese school uniforms go.

What’s not so normal is how transparent the pants are. In an effort to keep the students as cool as possible, the pants are made of an extra thin, almost mesh-like cloth.

It didn’t take the students long to realize the pants they were going to be wearing every day for the next few months were made of a material that might be better-suited to making a screen door than an article of clothing.

Upon getting her new low-thread count threads, one girl rushed back to the dormitory to try them on. Sure enough, the pants didn’t provide anywhere near the acceptable coverage, with her roommate immediately remarking, “I can see what color underwear you’ve got on.”

▼ The new summer uniform…
▼ is this thin.
Other female students concurred. “You can totally see the panty line, and the color, too! If they’re black, everyone will know they’re black. If they’re red, everyone will know they’re red!” complained one. “It’ll be so embarrassing to wear this in front of the boys in class,” fretted another. A third student resignedly mumbled, “Guess I’ll have to just wear another layer of clothes underneath the uniform.”

Faced with such logical complaints, school administrators took the unorthodox route of making the most illogical response possible, insisting that “The uniform’s degree of transparency is within reason.”

Honestly, this took us by surprise. We never knew there was a sliding scale for how see-through academically-mandated teenage girls’ clothing is allowed to be, but then again we’re not professional youth educators, much in the same way that we’re not socially clueless people with a staggering lack of empathy.

Before being distributed to the students, the uniforms passed an official screening process, although we’re a little skeptical about the rigors of a clothing test that doesn’t include “conceals underwear” as an inspection point. The school also boasted that the uniforms were produced by a reputable manufacturer, which raises questions about its criteria for “reputable” when the term is being applied to a company that makes see-through clothing for teens.

Parents and guardians, to the surprise of no one other than the school, are not pleased.

“How can you make developing girls wear this?” asked one parent, apparently sharing our lack of faith in the school’s official screening process. “If an adult were wearing this, it wouldn’t be something to get so worked up over, but it’s a different story when it’s a high school girl. It’s unacceptable,” commented a second.

“Young people’s bodies go through very big changes during high school, especially for girls,” said another parent. “They are very sensitive to the kind of attention they got from those around them, and in the long run these uniforms will have a negative affect on their emotional and psychological well-being.”

So far, the school is refusing to budge on its choice of uniform, adding that they cannot be returned to the manufacturer. We’ll be watching to see how the situation develops, and for the sake of the students’ modesty, we’ll be keeping our eyes above the waist.

Source: Sina Weibo, NetEase
Images: Sina Weibo
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