Danville to finalize school uniform rules

Danville to finalize school uniform rules

DANVILLE — Students should know this week what they'll be expected to wear to class starting next year.

After about three months of debate, the Danville school board on Wednesday is expected to approve a proposed uniform standard of dress for most K-12 students. While not all members agree with the "no jeans" restriction and others, most say it's a practical and affordable dress code that will improve the school climate and allow students to focus on their academics.

The board will meet at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Jackson Building, 516 N. Jackson St., Danville. A copy of the agenda is available online http://bit.ly/1eET45L.

"There may be some additional tweaks or modifications," Superintendent Mark Denman said. "But I'm recommending that the board approve this policy to give us ample time to communicate the change to our families, allow them to acquire the items and allow us to work with vendors to ensure that we have the supply available."

Once the board signs off, officials want to start stockpiling clothing of various sizes through donations or other means in a "clothing wardrobe" at each school. When students grow out of their clothes, they could donate them to the wardrobe and swap them for another size, if it's available.

Staff would also have clothing to loan to students who come to school dressed inappropriately.

"We have penalties (for noncompliance). But our goal is not to send anyone home," Denman said, adding the district will work with families through the transition.

Penalties for noncompliance are identical to those in the current dress-code policy. They include a warning, phone call to parent, meeting with parent, in-school suspension and up to a three-day out-of-school suspension for repeated violations.

Students may be exempt for "bona fide" religious reasons or other reasons, including medical, on a case-by-case basis. Northeast Elementary Magnet School students, who already wear a uniform, are also exempt.

Here are the dress code highlights:

— K-8 students may wear collared shirts (polos or button-down dress shirts) and turtlenecks in white and two other colors determined by the building principal. Logos that are hand-sized or smaller would be allowed.

— High school students may wear collared shirts and turtlenecks in any color or pattern.

— Students may wear sweaters or sweater vests in all colors and patterns over a collared shirt.

— Students may wear pants, capri pants, skirts, shorts or skorts in navy, black, gray, brown or khaki.

— Girls may wear dresses or jumpers of all colors and patterns.

— Girls may wear solid navy, black, gray or khaki-colored tights, leggings and jeggings under a dress or jumper, but not as pants.

— Students may wear scarves and jewelry as long as it's not gang-affiliated.

— Students may not wear jeans, sweatpants or other denim, flannel, fleece, wind fabric, leather, mesh, nylon, vinyl or spandex clothing.

— Students may not wear flip flops or house slippers. Shoes must have a closed heel or back strap.

— All students may wear school T-shirts, sweatshirts and other clothing on "spirit days" designated by the principal. High school students would also be allowed to wear school hoodies on those days.

— Students may also wear jeans on designated "dress down" days again designated by the principal as an incentive for good attendance and the like.

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