Thursday, June 07, 2001

Uniforms considered for middle school

By Ray Schaefer
Enquirer Contributor

        FORT THOMAS — Come August, it may be bye-bye Britney Spears blouses and no more Nike T-shirts at Highlands Middle School.

        The school's site-based council, which is made up of three teachers, three parents and Principal Mary Adams, met Tuesday to consider replacing the dress code with uniforms.

        A final vote is expected at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Highlands High School resource room.

        Ms. Adams wants to have the policy in place by July 1 so she can notify parents what to buy.

   Here is a comparison between the current and proposed dress codes at Highlands Middle School. The proposed code would take effect in August:
   Prohibited in the current code:
   1. Hats, caps, scarves or headbands, except for special event days.
   2. Clothing that has holes or is distressed.
   3. Apparel promoting drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, sex or is otherwise offensive or degrading.
   4. Midriff tops, halter tops and T-tops. All must have at least a 2-inch strap.
   5. Visible body piercing other than ears.
   6. Unnaturally colored hair that distracts from the educational process.
   7. Cutoffs. Undergarments must not be visible.
   8. Any apparel or accessories that are hazardous to the student or others.
Proposed code:
   1. Plain navy, black or khaki slacks, shorts, skirts or jumpers.
   2. White polo-style shirts.
   3. Highlands Middle School shirts

        “It's a community decision,” Ms. Adams said Wednesday.

        “It was a decision made by parents and teachers, and I am willing to support the people who are party to the school I work for.”

        Ms. Adams said the issue of uniforms for middle-school students has come up before.

        It resurfaced again because the new middle school is scheduled to open in September.

        “Some parents said, "We're going into a new school; this would be a great time to bring it up',” Ms. Adams said.

        The proposed code calls for boys to wear white shirts and either black, navy or khaki slacks or shorts. Girls may also wear those colors in jumpers or skirts.

        The only exception is shirts with the school logo that are sold on campus.

        There won't be any plaid skirts like girls attending many parochial schools have to wear, but T-shirts, blue jeans and even polo shirts with even the smallest of Nike swooshes are also gone.

        According to the one-page document outlining the changes, “Clothing should not be the primary source of individual expression during school hours. Individuality can shine through school work and other accomplishments or outside school hours. Dress codes do not kill individuality ... they can, instead, foster it.”

        The council began discussing more conservative threads at a May 15 meeting. According to minutes of that meeting, Margo McMurray, one of the parent members, supported the move.

        “It's a wonderful idea,” Ms. McMurray said.

        “It would reduce peer pressure and make every child the same when all are dressed the same.”

        At the special council meeting Tuesday, reaction was split.

        Opponents said new wardrobes would be too expensive, stifle student individuality and creativity, and not remove peer pressure.

        Supporters claim they will help students develop respect for the new building and each other and help everyone focus on education.

Ashcroft asserts stand against bias
Racial profiling ban introduced in Senate
Heavy rain clogs roads; flooding is widespread
More add summer to school seasons
Taft vetoes lawmaker immunity
Going to NASCAR race? You won't get there fast
Officials search for answers to highway fatalities
PULFER: The Bush girls
Swimmers mostly stay indoors
Italianfest moves to river
Oh boy, does Hamilton County love it when 'NSync comes to town
Retired city worker accuses Tillery in Genesis case
Street violence raises tensions
- Uniforms considered for middle school
Meeting breaks precedent
'Virtual' site considered
State OK's student standards with 'more meat'
State seeks fast track for testing
Out-of-wedlock births cited
Center for troubled boys to close after 30 years
2 charged in cocaine sales
Commissioners award bids for ballpark work
County approves deal over Bengals seats
Court puts school-funding plan on fast track
Edited movie yanked at Esquire
Ex-teacher in court on charge of sexual battery
Gas line set ablaze
Gas tax in Ky. may rise by fall
N. Ky. to help save unwanted infants
Nye joins race for Hamilton mayor
Officials leave office
Witness: Lies would kill U.S. visa for Demjanjuk
Kentucky News Briefs
Tristate A.M. Report