'We Should Be Worrying About Their Grades - Not Their Clothing'

From a new school dress code policy to a state Senate race and the arrest of a couple, Patch account-holders share their take on the day's news.

East Haven

"We should be worrying about their grades - not their clothing. ...I attended EHHS in the 70's in bell bottoms and 4 inch platform shoes and somehow managed to graduate with honors..." is upset that the Board of Education's will include the high school.


"Mr Himes, the pay for women is rising in China where your wall street friends sent our industries, thanks to your 'free trade'." offers his feedback on today's '' installment.


"If they don't live in the neighborhood then move on son." That's take on a police report in which a in connection with shooting at two teens who were reportedly looking for a stick to fix their bike in the couple's yard.


"Suzio has been active and very visible. Bartolomeo has a lot of catching up to do." offers that advice to Bartolomeo, the to challenge Suzio, the incumbent.

Sean M May 24, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Kids need discipline. When they have to dress properly, they taking education seriously. A dress code is a long past due action.
dpetit May 24, 2012 at 11:35 AM
As an educator and parent of three, I have seen this "uniform effect" in action. For whatever reason, it DOES work. Could it be that they are able to concentrate better or take it more seriously? I even know of students who "dress up" to study for an important test! It can't hurt to have a uniform and will save money in the long run for the parents. Hopefully, they will take that savings and put it in a 529!
Jaimie Cura (Editor) May 24, 2012 at 11:59 AM
Jennifer Lynne Downey: "I live in Waterbury where we have a dress code of blue/white shirts and black/khaki pants and its SOO easy getting kids ready in the morning. When people look nicer, they act better." Downey left the above comment on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/WoodMiddPatch
Sean M May 24, 2012 at 01:13 PM
Dress codes work because when people dress seriously they take their activities seriously. By doing so, they take school seriously and have self-respect. It is a principle practiced in the private sector.
Yolanda Fairbrother May 24, 2012 at 01:33 PM
What about the single parents that can barely pay for the clothes that their kids have now. Having to pay for another wardrobe just for school is very taxing in this time of penny pinching most of us have to do today. If you buy decent clothes in the first place and watch what your kids wear. Let them know in the first place that looking presentable and doing good in school will get them ahead in life.
D.Hawkins May 24, 2012 at 01:59 PM
It is actually cheaper to use uniforms than to purchase different clothes - My kids wore uniform throughout school; easy and practical. You only need 2 sets for winter and 2 sets for summer- while one is in the wash, the other is being used.
Ruth May 24, 2012 at 02:35 PM
We SHOULD worry about their grades, but we should also be concerned about their dress. As a "baby boomer", we had dress codes in school that served us well and were never a problem. As a parent/grandparent, I have seen the angst caused as I could not afford the "designer" clothes/shoes, etc. Uniforms level that playing field. Everyone is "equal" as far as their clothing, and no one is "singled" out. It is discipline that these kids will need in life when they are "free" to make all of their own choices about everything.
Sean M May 24, 2012 at 09:55 PM
Having a dress code is an asset to kids. It is in their best interest. This is about creating an environment where learning is taken seriously. It is the same concept as when we all purchased our first car. We took care of it because it was ours.
Dad in Oxford May 24, 2012 at 11:00 PM
I could not agree more. Dress codes will only benefit the kids because it will take a lot off pressure of them by not having to compete with their friends over who is wearing what. Plus, the things girls wear today is ridiculous and I cannot understand what some parents are thinking. A dress code is cheaper because instead of buying a ton of new clothes, you only need a few pairs of pants, shirts, or skirts. I hope Oxford institutes a dress code ASAP!
Ruth May 25, 2012 at 10:44 AM
Yeah to "Dad in Oxford". My husband and I cannot believe the way the teenagers who get on the bus in front of our house are dressed. Some of the girls have shorts on that look like a bandaid. Uniforms should be instituted state wide for so many reasons. Some of the parents don't seem to show any common sense about what their children should/should not be wearing to school. There is so much inappropriateness in so many areas. I keep hoping for the sake of my grandchildren that Region 15 institutes a dress code policy. If they try, I am sure there will be out cries of "taking their freedoms away" and the like.
Robert Williams May 25, 2012 at 12:02 PM
Good Morning, Interesting discussion. I am surprised no one has offered any real evidence surrounding the use of uniforms in school and performance; see links below, the evidence surrounding school uniforms and grade performance is overwhelming. The research indicates that uniforms have little to no effect on performance. Seems to me the issue is more of older generations not liking the clothes today's kids wear. This appears to be a time honored tradition of older generations not agreeing with younger generations clothes. It happened when I was in high school and obviously continues. I think the real issue here is not the clothes but the parents. Proper learning and respect for school begin and end at home. If your kid is not doing well at school, perhaps you should look in the mirror at yourself and not at the clothes your kids are wearing to school. http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/09/01/study-shows-school-uniforms-improve-attendance-but-not-grades/ http://www.uh.edu/econpapers/RePEc/hou/wpaper/2009-03.pdf http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_education_edblog/2007/11/school-uniforms.html http://www.greatschools.org/find-a-school/defining-your-ideal/121-school-uniforms.gs
Sean M May 25, 2012 at 01:51 PM
Robert, a dress code is different than uniforms, at least in my comments. Dress codes are PART of a pattern of success. Schools that have discipline and teach self-respect have better behaved and achieving students. You are correct that it starts at the home with the parents.
Will Wilkin May 25, 2012 at 03:42 PM
It seems common sense (and practice) that there at least be SOME level of dress code at school --shoes and shirt are required. And I agree with those who argue the standards should be even higher than that, though I did mourn the "no denim" and mandatory collars at Emmett O'Brien, I now look back on it as a great school and a good rule for such a school. I have talked with enough teachers about this (though not at Oxford) to believe it is true that some students do indeed change their clothes after last parental sight before school (especially girls), as there can be no other explanation for such underdressing. This conversation drifted to Oxford from an East Haven article. I'm curious if there are reasons that dress code requires revisiting here. I've never been in the hs during school hours but certainly Center and Great Oak seem to me to have a great (positive and respectful) climate with whatever standards are already in place.
Ruth May 25, 2012 at 04:27 PM
It is not a matter of the "older" generations not liking what the younger generations are wearing. It is a matter of dressing appropriately for where and what you are doing. As a baby boomer (older generation), we had strict dress codes applied in school, especially high school, and we were respectful of that. Also, there have been studies done indicating that the casual dress for business contributed to "casual" work ethics. They did research that indicated that workers were more productive when they dressed more "business" appropriate. That is why many companies have done away with casual dress except for perhaps once a week. Generation has nothing to do with any of this. My children (in their 30's) do not permit their children to wear short-shorts, mini's or low slung pants with underwear exposed, graphic T's etc. to school.
Dad in Oxford May 25, 2012 at 09:40 PM
My comments above were meant to say that I am in favor of a uniformity in school dress. Call it what you like, a dress code or a uniform, but a standard that applies to all students with no exceptions. Whether it affects their performance or not, it teaches that standards must be enforced, that rules must be followed, and that dressing nice, makes you feel and look better. Parents and children should not be scared of a uniform or dress code. Those standards are a part of everyday life. Who wears uniforms or has a dress code? Businesses where the dress code is business casual, mechanics, McDonalds workers, airline employees, Catholic schools, Doctors, Stop & Shop employees, etc...Uniforms or a Dress Code are normal! Uniforms (slacks and a collered shirt for boys and whatever the proper attire is for girls) also lessen the competition kids have with each other about their clothes and it lessens the amount of new and different clothes you have to buy every year, PLUS it will negate those early morning fights with your daughters about what they think they can wear to school. And before you complain about the cost, look at what you are spending your money on first. You have a computer (nice-to-have) to type your response, you probably have a cell phone (nice-to-have), you probably have satellite or cable tv (nice-to-have), you may smoke, these are all things you don't need. Clothes are more important! I am 1000% in favor of uniforms in the Oxford school system.
Sean M May 26, 2012 at 01:31 AM
I do not like the idea of uniforms. Setting a minimum standard of dress is appropriate. Forcing kids to wear the exact same thing is a little too much for me. The standard should apply to teachers and administrators also. I think we agree on the rest. I would encourage you to run for the BOE in Oxford to implement these policies.


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