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Fashion Patrols

July 06, 1994

I am annoyed by the vast amount of time, energy and resources being used to govern clothing choices for students. For example, safety meetings being used to create Fashion Patrols.

Fashion Patrols should not be running our schools. Professional educators, staff and administrators should not be spending their time measuring waistlines and hemlines and verifying if every belt made it through every loop. Fashion Patrols send the message that what you wear is more important than what you say or do.

One junior high administrator contends that school is a place of business. An elementary principal argues that uniforms will improve concentration in class, study habits and attendance. These statements suggest that changing clothes will solve the problems facing the children at our schools.

Schools are not a place of business. Businesses are created for the purpose of generating profits. Their bottom line is the amount of money earned. On the other hand, schools are a place to learn. Learning is a process that is reflected on paper, by words, actions and deeds. Students should come dressed with an attitude to learn.

Regardless of the clothes someone chooses to wear, each individual is the same person inside. It is the person who matters. It is the student who matters.

School board trustees should make a decision regarding school district dress code policies. Do they want one strict districtwide dress code? Or do they want to leave the current general policy intact and let each school site establish its own standard, even if it includes uniforms?

They should make a decision so that more time, energy and resources can be redirected toward making real changes. Let's address the real problems, such as acts of violence, harassment, pushing and shoving, name-calling, vandalism, intolerance, ignorance and prejudices, that confront students and adults in their daily lives.


Simi Valley

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