2210 - School Uniforms/Dress Code
Student Uniform/Dress Code Washington County School District - May 2013; Revised 6-18-19
1. Purpose and Philosophy
The Board, herein, establishes the framework for the adoption of uniforms in the schools of Washington County School District, K-12, within the consideration that each student in the public schools should be allowed to learn in a safe environment which fosters the teaming process, reduces peer competition, and is free from unnecessary disruption.
2.1. Students who attend the schools of Washington County School District are expected to come to school dressed appropriately for a a school environment.
2.2. It is the policy of the Washington County School Board and District to provide opportunity for, but not to require, the wearing of school uniforms.
• Utah Code: 53G-7-802 and 803
• H.B. 250, 2019 General Session, School Fee Revisions
2.2.2. Subject to this policy, a District school may adopt a school uniform policy that requires students enrolled at that school to wear a designated school uniform during the school day.
2.2.3. The objective of a school uniform policy shall include one or more of the following purposes:
(1) promote a more effective climate of learning,
(2) create opportunities for self-expression,
(3) increase campus safety and security,
(4) foster school unity and pride,
(5) eliminate "label competition",
(6) ensure modest dress, or
(7) minimize costs to parents and to level socioeconomic barriers.
2.2.4. A proposed school uniform policy shall:
(1) protect students' free exercise of religious beliefs;
(2) specify whether the uniform policy is voluntary or mandatory for students;
(3) specify whether or not the uniform policy has an opt-out provision in addition to the provisions under Subsection (5); and
(4) include a provision for financial assistance to families who cannot afford to purchase a required uniform, which may include:
(i) the school providing school uniforms to students:
(ii) the school making used school uniforms available to students; or
(iii) other programs to make school uniforms available to economically disadvantaged students.
2.2.5. A proposed elementary school uniform policy may not require clothing that is prescriptive or expensive.
2.2.6. A proposed school uniform policy shall include a provision allowing a principal at any time during the school year to grant an exemption from wearing a school uniform to a student because of extenuating circumstances.
2.3. Policy Approval:
2.3.1. Once approved under this policy a school may include uniforms in the school dress codes, if the majority of parents voting at the election are in favor of uniforms. Students, as well as parents, are to be included in discussions regarding uniforms and the selection of uniforms. The local School Board, (if more than one school), or the School Principal, (if a single school), may adopt a school uniform policy, subject to the procedures in 3.1.
2.3.2. Only parents and guardians of students subject to the proposed uniform policy may vote at the election, limited to one vote per family.
2.3.3. A vote to discontinue an adopted school uniform policy may not take place during the first year of its operation.
3.1. School Uniform Approval Procedures:
3.1.1. Students, as well as parents, are to be included in discussions regarding uniforms and the selection of uniforms.
3.1.2. Prior to voting on and adopting a uniform policy, the District, principal, or community council must hold at least one public hearing on the specific proposed policy so that parents, students, and faculty have an opportunity to comment and voice their opinions.
3.1.3. The specific policy proposal must be submitted to the parents in the school for a vote, to implement the dress code. Only parents and guardians of students subject to the proposed uniform policy may vote at the election, limited to one vote per family.
3.1.4. Voting on the adoption of a school uniform dress code shall be designated in such a way that every parent in the school community has a reasonable and fair opportunity to be informed of the vote (notify at least three weeks prior to the proposed election with information to include date, time, place and process of submitting a vote) and to cast a vote-one per family (e.g., having an election by mail-in ballot, holding an election at the school over several days, allowing for absentee ballots, etc.) . Any election which results in disapproval shall have holding power for a period of two years; i.e., it shall not be subject to further votes for a period of two years from the date of disapproval.
3.1.5. If a vote approves a school uniform policy, a vote to discontinue an adopted school uniform policy may not take place during the first year of its operation, unless a vote is only to determine significant changes in the uniform policy, but not whether to have such a policy.
3.1.6. Only parents/guardians who will have children in the school the year the proposed school uniform dress code is to take effect are eligible to vote, but are restricted to one vote per family.
3.1.7. No student shall be denied attendance at school, penalized, or otherwise subject to subtle coercion or disciplinary measures for failing to wear a school uniform if parents have "opted out" of a uniform policy.
3.1.8. Those parents "opting-out" for their students may do so by seeking an exemption by meeting with the designated administrator for a clear explanation of the school uniform policy, to verify the accuracy of the information on the requested exemption, and submitting the completed application to the administrator responsible for exemptions at the school.
3.1.9. Each school that adopts a uniform policy shall communicate to parents/guardians the types and colors of the uniform, the requirements for jackets or other outer garments, optional articles of attire, if any, the availability of financial support and the methods by which students of limited means can apply for assistance, and information about where the uniform can be purchased.
3.2. Administrators in the respective schools will notify students when they do not comply with the dress standard. The following actions may be taken when students are not in compliance:
3.2.1. Parents or guardian will be notified;
3.2.2. Student may be sent home to make changes necessary to be in compliance with policy.
3.2.3. Suspension from school may occur for continued disregard for the dress and/or grooming standards.
3.3. Dress code policy is to be included in student and employee handbooks.