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Warren County Schools will implement dress code

Posted May 22, 2008

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— Parents in Warren County are split over a new school policy that will require students to adhere to a dress code for the 2008-2009 school year.

School administrators said the decision was based on the need to discourage "gang-like" activity, and they said they believe a dress code could help do that.

Principals say colors and logos are ways students identify themselves as part of certain groups.

"I could imagine, if you go into a restroom and you see someone dressed all in a certain color – I would be sort of reluctant to go in," Warren County High School Principal Joyce Long said.

But some parents say that's not enough reason to tell all students what they can wear.

"It's not a private school. It's a public school, and I buy my clothes for my children," parent Christine Dunham said. "I don't think they have a right to tell me what to buy."

The school system still must decide which clothes will fit the dress code and which will not. The policy will likely go beyond colors and logos and include how students wear clothes, Warren County Schools Superintendent Ray Spain said.

"(It could be) things that would normally be distracting from the environment, things that are too tight or too loose," he said.

There is a public hearing on the new dress code next Friday, but a specific time and location have not been determined.

School officials expect to announce the details of the dress code in June.

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  • Pulling for the Tarheels May 23, 2008

    Let's try a new concept of "set the dress code and ENFORCE THE CODE". Nothing is more frustrating than to walk into a school and see boys wearing their pants with the crotch down to their knees - and the girls wearing clothing either so low or so short, one can see their undergarments (and that's if the material isn't sheer). Then, Administrators and Teachers just walk past them and ignore it - what lesson are you teaching these kids? The only time anyone called my daughter out on her clothing, was a day that she wore shorts and the shorts "were slightly shorter than the length of the tip of her fingers against her legs". It didn't matter that she was 5'9 and that her fingers were almost to her knees. After she was humiliated on that day, she never wore shorts again (only capri pants and jeans) - while she watched others "get away with breaking the rules". It should be an "all or none rule".

  • Amruby May 23, 2008

    Most schools that have uniforms (public and private) have a clothing locker at school that teachers, family members, etc contribute to. There is not a student in the school that does not have a uniform if he cannot buy one. Uniforms in NC public schools usely consist of T-shirts in school colors and Khaki pants or skirts. I teach in Nash County and you would not believe what these kids can do to a uniform to make them nonconforming. Shirt tails out, sagging pants, huge belt buckles, blouses open and boobs haning out. It is a struggle everyday with uniforms. I cannot imagine what it would be like without them. We had one "dress down day" for a reward and the kids literally went crazy. That won't be happening again at our school. Uniforms are actually cheaper and easier to acquire than some of the expensive fads that the kids can come up with.

  • colliedave May 23, 2008

    "It's not a private school. It's a public school, and I buy my clothes for my children," parent Christine Dunham said. "I don't think they have a right to tell me what to buy."

    And I am sure her little darlings recieve free or reduced lunches and food stamps. The purpose of unifoms, is to keep the playing field level in terms of clothing. It also removes the opportunity to wear designer duds that poorer parents cannot afford. She should be thankful instead of whining. But it's all about the entitlement mentality.

  • kal May 23, 2008

    I don't think this dress code will stick. If they pass something it needs to be enforced. Schools are penalized for attendance and suspension counts-this woun;t be around long

  • something2say May 22, 2008

    I was a private school kid before coming to NC and I thought I would love not having to wear a uniform in highschool! I couldn't have been more wrong, I dreaded dressing every day. I hated hearing kids talk about who had what clothes. It was terrible.

    Now my own kid is in Private and again, I love uniforms! Yes they are expensive but I don't have to buy but a few piece if I can't get them handed down from another family! There is no way with uniforms to figure out the "Has" and "has not" in school! Clothes don't distract from studies. Ultimately, I save money because the quality of the uniforms is high and I don't have to replace clothes during the year!

    I have heard many public school parents indicate they would love uniforms and wish it would come to a vote@

  • speedy May 22, 2008

    As a parent of a kid who went to private (with a dress code) for a while, they'll find out it's the best thing that ever happened to them.

  • hawk_fan May 22, 2008

    I wish we had a more strict dress code policy in our county. I'm a dark ages person, too. We weren't allowed to wear sweatshirts or T-shirts with saying on them when I went to school a million years ago. (nor did we want to as this was how the "hoods" dressed) Shorts were a no-no as were skirts above the knees. While I don't feel the need to be that strict, I would like to go down the hall and not see so many kids looking like bums. While I am waving my magic wand, I'd love to get some of my colleagues out of flip-flops, jeans, and sweatshirts, too. :-)

    I have the feeling that I am sounding like that grumpy old man on the SNL skits from years ago. ;-)

  • NCTeacher May 22, 2008

    The lady in the story trips me out with her assertion that the school board can't tell her what to buy. She's right- they can't tell her what to buy. But they certainly have every right to tell her kid what he can and can't wear to school. I don't understand why they even have to have a hearing about it. Just implement the dress code and make students abide by it- it really isn't that big of a deal. And plain clothes are actually cheaper than all of the tredy brands out now- if they can afford those, affording appropriate ones isn't even an issue.

    I went to school back in the dark ages and our dress code was almost as strict as the ones we have to day. We didn't have to wear solid colors- but we couldn't have anything vulgar, pants couldn't sag, appropriate length shorts/skirts, appropriate coverage of private parts, etc.... We turned out okay. Our parents didn't have to "approve" of the dress code either- we were told and expected to follow it.

  • ringmaster May 22, 2008

    Why don't the schools purchase and provide uniforms of some sort if this is a real problem? The kids would turn them in at the end of the year for the next years students. If not, I dont see why parents have a tough time buying kids clothes that are appropriate. If you are buying them anyhow, buy something nice (maybe with an alligator on it). Again, I realize some parents will have a problem with this, but you cant please all the people all the time.