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Monday, January 03, 2011

To tie, or not to tie

We now resume your regularly scheduled programming...

Welcome to the new year, everyone. The new part of the school year that is. Some of us went back to school today. Some of us did not have kids in our classroom today, but still, turn off the lights, the party's over.

Since today IS (technically) Monday, it's time for another INTERACTIVE MONDAY question.

Today, it is this: Does your school have a dress code for teachers, and how do you feel about that? Sort of 2 questions, but I used a comma and a conjunction, so it's only one sentence.

My district has always had a dress code for teachers in the past. From October 1st through around the first week in May, men were required to wear ties, and women to wear hose. Of course, slacks/dresses/button down shirts were the norm.

This year, however, that dress code has not been implemented. We've been on "summer dress code" -- polo shirt and slacks -- all year long. And I'm not complaining.

I really don't know if this is because my administrator is just way behind in directives or if the district just decided not to enforce the policy this year, but I kind of like it. I'd like it better if we got to wear jeans a lot more often, but at least I don't feel like I'm being choked to death by a neck tie every day.

What about where YOU work? Dress code or no? What do you think?


loonyhiker said...

I think it is important as teachers for us to dress professionally and be a role model for our students. We were not allowed to wear blue jeans, tshirts, or tennis shoes. Of course, no skimpy outfits or underwear showing. I wish that a dress code was not necessary but unfortunately, it is in many schools because some teachers refuse to dress professionally. My other problem is that it is not enforced fairly in most cases. I have seen one teacher get away with dressing how she wants while another teacher gets called in for not dressing according to code. This inequality causes a big drop in morale and I would rather see no dress code than one that is not followed across the board.

Mister Teacher said...

Loony, I can see how that would cause a big drop in morale!
I agree that we need to be role models. But there is nothing wrong with wearing jeans and tennis shoes. As long as the jeans don't have holes in them or excessive tightness or (gasp) cut out butt cheek holes.

William Gripentrog said...

When you look professional, you tend to act professional. Hopefully, you will be treated as a professional. It is sad that we need a dress code, it should be an expectation. Of course at our inservice today, I was the only one in a tie, out of 180 teachers and administrators (including the presenter), so I guess I may not have the popular opinion.

If your ties are choking you, get a bigger necksize.

Melissa E. said...

Hmm. In my school, practically no one wears ties or hose, ever. Nice khacki slacks and a sweater are fine in the wintertime. We get to wear jeans on Friday, and mostly no one says anything about the nice dark wash trouser jeans on other days if we wear them with a nice blouse.

Now, I get that most of the teachers commenting here are upper grade teachers, and that is a different matter. But for elementary school teachers, at least, comfort is essential.

I totally get the looking "professional" thing, but in an elementary school, where I'm going from crawling on the floor with kindergarteners to climbing on chairs acting out a play with my 5th graders, a skirt and hose just wouldn't cut it. In fact, I think it looks more unprofessional to overdress in an elementary school, because it inhibits your job performance. How can you chase down a recalcitrant 1st grader in dress shoes and hose?

Just my two cents. ;)

Mister Teacher said...

I'm with ya, Melissa.

PamelaTrounstine said...

Hose? Oh no. In my state, lawyers in court don't necessarily wear hose. But this also implies wearing skirts, which unless long I found positively impractical while teaching.

I personally love the affect that uniforms have had on the student body. I think teachers should dress in the same uniform, or better, while teaching. If we ask students to respect the position, we have to dress the part.

However, I think that theme days are excellent ways to boost morale for a school, and teachers should participate. As some of the schools I've worked at where parent-student surveys indicated not enough college-going culture, schools decided to promote their alma maters with pennants in the classrooms and office, and college logo apparel on Fridays. There were a lot of embroidered sweatshirts, etc. with navy pants or non-faded jeans- but there was also a lot of college name recognition, too!

Katie said...

The dress code is being strongly enforced at our campus. DISD is a little nutso about it. I teach art, and so I push the limits of the dress code, as I just am not willing to constantly ruin slacks and blouses. Jeans would be a more practical choice for me, but, sadly jeans on my campus are equated with a life of under achievement, so, I just destroy several pairs of khakis a year.

lady said...

I live in Vermont, we don't know from dress codes. I teach in an elementary school. I am overweight and have very little fashion sense or money. I wear jean 2-3 times a week. No one has ever said a thing. I dress nicer than many of my students, although certainly not my coworkers. I don't feel more professional when I dress up for school, I just feel uncomfortable.