The Wayne County Public Schools Board of Education respects a student's right to choose his or her style of dress or appearance. However, the Board of Education will require that students adhere to standards of dress that are compatible with the requirement of a good school environment. All students are expected to be groomed and dressed appropriately for school activities. In the opinion of the principal or his/her designee, if a student's dress appearance is such that it (1) disrupts the learning environment, (2) constitutes a threat to health or safety, (3) is constructed as provocative or obscene, or (4) is lacking in cleanliness, the principal or the principal's designee may require the student and the student's parent or guardian to take appropriate action to remedy the situation.
The principal shall have the authority to implement the school dress code and appearance policy in a manner that is age appropriate, and reasonable consideration will be made for those students who, because of a sincerely held religion belief, or medical reason request a waiver of a particular guideline for dress or appearance. The waiver request must be in writing from the parent or guardian and must be approved by the principal or his/her designee. Reasonable accommodations shall be made by the principal to accommodate students involved in special duties, activities, or projects approved by the school. This would include, but is not limited to, athletics, vocational classes and projects, physical education classes, special events, or other activities that would allow for non-conforming dress on a school campus or during a school sponsored event.
Disciplinary action will be taken for any violation of the dress code. Students who do not comply with the school dress code and appearance policy may be excluded from participating in certain school programs, including graduation ceremonies. (Fowler vs. Williamson, 39 N.C. App. 715, 251 S.E. 2d 889 (1979). Copies of the dress code and Appearance Policy will be made available to students and parents annually.
Specific guidelines listed below will apply to all students:
In addition to the above guidelines, all high school students are expected to wear their shirt tails tucked in at all times, before, during and immediately following the instructional day.
- Shorts, skirts, dresses or other clothing cannot be more than three inches above the top of the knee.
- Shirts, tops, and dresses must cover the top of the shoulder and the armpits and have sleeves or be worn with a top that does have sleeves or an undergarment that covers the armpits.
- Shirts and tops should be long enough to cover the midriff when sitting or standing; and shirts, tops, and dresses must be buttoned high enough to cover the chest and the back of the body cannot be exposed.
- No sagging pants allowed and pants cannot be worn with the waistband below the hipbone.
- Underwear cannot be visible at any time.
- No see-through or mesh clothing that will reveal the body or will reveal underwear.
- Oversized clothing or too-tight clothing such as spandex bicycle/biker shorts, jeggings, leggings, etc. will not be allowed. Girls pants should have pockets on them to be considered okay for dress code.
- Any form of attire which is indicative of gang affiliation is prohibited.
- No headwear (hats, caps, hoods, kerchiefs, curlers, sweatbands, etc.) or sunglasses can be worn inside school buildings.
- No bandannas.
- Clothing will not be allowed which depicts references to controlled substances, has unacceptable language and symbols, or that may be sensitive to the culture of students or staff, or that may be offensive or suggestive to any race, sex, or religion.
- Proper footwear is required. Shoes that have laces must be laced and tied.
- Clothing must be worn appropriately (nothing inside-out, backwards, rolled up pants legs, unfastened overalls, etc.) and belts must be worn buckled and worn at the waist line.
- There will be no jewelry affixed to a students nose, tongue, lips, cheek, or eyebrow. Spacers are not allowed.
- Clothing designed for school athletic events, i.e. cheerleader outfits, etc. that does not meet the above guidelines cannot be worn during the instructional day unless appropriate outer garments are worn over the outfit.
- Students in grade 4 through 12 must wear a belt if the garment has belt loops.
- For security reasons, coats may not be worn inside the school building during the school day. Coats may be worn during class changes if the student is exiting the building. Coats may be worn to school and placed in the student’s locker or hung in the classroom.
Students violations of the Dress Code and Appearance Policy shall be handled by the principal or the principal designee and in accordance with Dress Code. Appropriate disciplinary action for violations of the Dress code will include the following:
1st Offense: Inform the student that they have violated Policy 4305. Give the student an opportunity to change into acceptable clothing by using available clothes at school or by calling a parent to bring clothes. If neither option is used, the student may be placed in ISS or isolation for the remainder of the day. Send a letter to parents informing them that the student has violated the Student Dress Code and Appearance Policy and that a repeat infraction will result in ISS, suspension or out of school suspension.
2nd Offense: A second infraction of Policy 4305 will be considered as defiance. The student will be sent to ISS, to school isolation or may be suspended for one day.
3rd Offense (and additional): A third infraction of Policy 4305 will result in the student being suspended out of school for three days and not being allowed to return to school until a conference is held with the parents and the student.
Disciplinary action may vary if a student has cumulative record of other student conduct violations