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Saturday, March 28, 2009

America's Next Top Student

Class picture day is coming up for us this Monday, so I thought it might be a good time to dust off an old Mr. Teacher column from This column originally ran on December 25, 2007 here.

Like I told my kids yesterday, try to come to school looking your best! No shirts with hot cheeto stains, no holes in the armpits, no fishstick crumbs hanging from your eyebrows!

And follow the advice below!!

My school district made the transition to standardized uniforms a couple of years ago, so all of the kids now wear white collared shirts, and blue or navy bottoms. But before that, the fashion statements varied widely.

There were of course the wacky outfits, the mismatched colors, and the unfortunate accessories. All of which can be excused because, after all, these are very young children we are talking about. However, there were several cases where I had to scratch my head and wonder how on earth the parents could let their child come to school dressed like that.

Adjectives can be fun. T-shirts that shout, "Awesome!", "Super!" , or "Rockin!” are great for children, but no one should ever wear any article of clothing that proclaims the wearer, "Juicy." Especially if this word is stitched across the rear end of a pair of sweat pants. That's just wrong, plain and simple.

Also in the category of incorrectness, third grade kids should not be wearing shirts to school that promote Hooters. I don't care how tasty their chicken wings are, or how pleasant the service, the connotations associated with such a shirt would most likely hinder the educational process. Save the Hooters shirts for the neighborhood birthday parties.

And while we're on the topic of insinuated body parts, let's try to keep the racy images to a minimum. When a child comes to school wearing a shirt depicting a bikini-clad woman of Pam Anderson-dimensions, it can be a huge distraction. For the male teachers, anyway.

I'm not going to make any suggestions in this forum as to when girls should begin wearing supporting undergarments. However, I will posit my opinion that no one under the age of 19 should sport the colored bra/translucent white shirt combo. If your daughter insists on wearing that red polka-dotted brassiere, then you need to insist that she wear three shirts on top of it.
Parents, you may have outgrown your “Mondale -- Ferraro ‘84” T-shirt, but please don't foist it on your middle schooler. They will be exposed to politics soon enough; let them enjoy this time of blissful ignorance.

Finally, we come to the ultimate fashion transgression. Before the dress code, the thing that disturbed me the most was seeing kids wearing North Carolina sports jerseys. This, quite frankly, is NEVER acceptable.

Parents, please take a look at your kids before they head off for school. Take a minute to review any pictures and words that you see. Demand a wardrobe change if necessary.

If they complain, you can always suggest that they save that particular outfit for their grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary later this year.


Farnnay said...

It's so sad when kids come to school wearing clothes that have obviously not been washed, have stains from months ago, with holes. It's worse to see students wear clothes that I know my parents would kill me if I left the house in.
It's especially worse when this happens on picture day.

Kristine said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Melissa B. said...

We see all kinds of T's at Our Humble High School. Coed Naked Volleyball comes to mind. Dirty Dick's Crabhouse and Brew Thru, too. BTW, I'm celebrating One Year in the Blogosphere with a special 2-day Sx3 today and tomorrow. The winner gets a $50 Tar-Jay Gift Card. Please say you'll play!

nisha said...

This article simply ROCKS ! That was a great read for me. keep it up with all the good work..