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Schools change dress code

Prince Edward County Public Schools’ (PECPS) 2017 Code of Conduct includes revisions made in regards to safety, student dress codes, student cell phone policy and age appropriateness of consequences for disciplinary infractions from the previous Code of Conduct.

Among the changes are two separate dress codes for Prince Edward Elementary School (PECES) and the division’s secondary schools.

Dr. Barbara Johnson

“We always want to consider what is age and developmentally appropriate when making decisions about our children,” said Division Superintendent Dr. Barbara Johnson. “The same is true with our dress code.”

The Code of Conduct states that in the elementary school clothing should be size appropriate, meaning no oversized shirts, pants or other articles of clothing. It also cites students aren’t to wear tight stretch pants, sagging pants, pants with writing on the sitting area, unbuttoned shirts, hats, hoodies — or other head coverings.

It states reasonable accommodation will be made for attire required by a student’s religion.

The code does not state the same for secondary-school students, specifically for size-appropriate clothing, unbuttoned shirts, pants with writing on the sitting area, transparent blouses or any see-through garments and tight stretch pants.

In the secondary schools, leggings, jeggings and tights are required to have a dress worn over top of them that is fingertip length or longer.

“Our younger children tend to be more physically active and their days are structured differently; therefore, there is a little more flexibility in the elementary dress code,” Johnson said. ”Overall, our goal is to promote a safe, disciplined environment for our children that maximizes all opportunities for learning.”

According to a PowerPoint presentation on the PECPS website, the revisions were based on feedback and recommendations from staff and the community.