The debate on whether children should wear school uniforms has been ongoing for years now. In some countries, wearing of schools uniforms is but a normal thing and school children are required to wear one. In the United States, school uniforms are more often seen on private schools but not in state-funded schools. It was only in the early 90s when some schools began adopting school uniforms more so to stop children from dressing up in gang clothing or, in the alternative, upscale-level clothing. And despite the debate there has been an upsurge in US public schools requiring school uniforms from only 3% in 1996 to 18% in 2010. For some schools, security is one reason they insist on these uniforms as they can easily see who does not belong to the school.
These days though the dress code in schools is not limited to school children. School districts in Texas now have dress codes for teachers, too. Although some have then already, other schools have just established it recently in response to the tightening of dress code. The problem that is happening in the schools is the same problem that is occurring in the business workplace. The casual dress trend has also invaded the schools and unfortunately the bar is set so low that some inappropriate clothing or choices inappropriate for school setting has invaded too. The blame could also be put on the amorphous term business casual that has become the trend in the corporate world. Unfortunately, the term business casual is ambiguous and is open to interpretation and has so far been causing a lot of misinterpretations. A business casual for one may mean street clothes for another or vice versa. And with so many new teachers coming from the dot.com generation where blue jeans are ubiquitous, a teachers work attire has just become street casual.
The school officials certainly weighed in different factors when deciding on implementing stricter dress code. Teachers are very active and need to be comfortable in their work attire making it necessary that what they wear is apt for the activities they have to do. School officials does not plan to revert to old teachers dress codes but they have to define what is and is not appropriate in the school setting to make sure teachers do not make the mistake. In light of the fact that they plan to make good the implementation of the school uniforms, then it is therefore important that teachers know also what is suitable to wear. Since the error was in the interpretation of what is the general statement on what is appropriate to wear, the school officials needed to review and craft the dress guidelines.
And unwittingly the guidelines in the correct work attire for teachers have helped in the class management. The dress code certainly set a more formal tone and established the teachers position of authority within the classroom. The same way that professional work attire affects peoples impression in a person, the proper dress code for teachers affect how they are perceived by their students. The school district then established the guidelines fully interpreted with their version of business casual and listed in detail what is suitable and what is not. And obviously, what is not appropriate in the business workplace like showing skin in cleavage, midriff and above the knees, flip-flops and casual sandals, shorts and miniskirts, are also those in the prohibited list for women teachers. On the other hand, t-shirts and other dress shirts that cannot be tucked in are deemed inappropriate. The teachers work attire based on the school districts guidelines have definitely not changed much but at least now the teachers know what they can and cannot wear in school.
Lola Hanson is professionally a product consultant for an online uniform store but is also an experienced Internet Researcher and freelance writer. She writes about various topics such as screen printing and embroidery on work attire
and other corporate apparels and workwear uniforms. She is happy she is able to combine her love for writing and fashion including school uniforms
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