Purpose: To establish the superintendent's expectations for student dress code.
1. Statement of Policy
It is the policy of the Beaufort County School District to regulate reasonable attire of students during the school day. Students in all schools shall wear an approved school uniform with only legally-mandated exceptions. To maintain an educational environment that is safe and conducive to the educational process, students in all grades shall abstain from wearing or possessing specified items during the school day.
2. Statement of Purpose
The Beaufort County School District has determined that reasonable regulation of school attire can further important educational interests, including:
reducing distraction and loss of self-esteem caused by teasing or competition over clothing;
minimizing disruption from wearing inappropriate clothing or possessing inappropriate items at school;
providing an environment where students can focus more on learning;
enhancing school safety by making it harder to conceal weapons or contraband;
enhancing school safety by helping teachers and administrators identify individuals that are not enrolled in the school when they encounter them on school grounds;
enhancing school safety by prohibiting gang colors and paraphernalia;
reducing the cost of school clothing;
providing an educational environment where financial disparities between students, as reflected in clothing, are minimized;
creating a greater sense of community and school pride among the students;
instilling discipline in students;
helping students and parents to avoid peer pressure;
helping prepare students for future roles in the workplace; and
creating an atmosphere reflecting seriousness of purpose about education.
A. Shirts, Sweaters, and Sweatshirts (Tops)
Tops may be solid white or additional solid colors designated by the individual school.
Students must wear plain shirts with a collar. Mock turtlenecks and turtlenecks are acceptable.
Shirts may have school-approved logos.
Shirts may not exceed one size larger or smaller than necessary as determined by the school administrator.
Shirts must be tucked in (exceptions may be made for Pre-school and kindergarten students as needed by administration).
White T-shirts (long or short sleeves) may be worn under uniform shirts.
Students may wear plain, unhooded sweaters or sweatshirts over school uniforms. The sweaters or sweatshirts may be solid white or school designated colors.
B. Pants, Skirts, Skorts, Jumpers, Capri Length Pants, and Shorts (Bottoms):
Bottoms may be solid khaki, black or navy.
Jeans are not permitted. Principals may make exceptions for a specific group such as seniors or for special days.
Bottoms must be free of graphics and embroidery. With the exception of small labels, bottoms may not have insignias, words or pictures.
Shorts, skirts, skorts, and jumpers shall be modest and of sufficient length. The length of these articles of clothing shall be no shorter than three (3) inches above the top of the knee when standing.
Cargo-style pants or shorts are not permitted.
Clothing may not exceed one size larger or smaller than necessary and may not be too tight as determined by a school administrator. Baggy or sagging pants or shorts are not permitted. “Low rise” clothing is not permitted. Pants, shorts, and skirts must be worn at the natural waistline.
Belts must be worn if pants, skirts, skorts or shorts have belt loops (exceptions may be made by administration). Belt buckles must not be oversized, computerized or have any writing that is considered offensive.
Skinny pants are not permitted.
C. Coats and Jackets (Outerwear)
(1) Outerwear may not be worn inside the school building during the school day.
(2) Outerwear may be worn during a class change if the student is exiting the building.
(3) Outerwear may be worn to school and placed in the student’s locker. If a locker is not available, it may be hung in the classroom or other location designated by the principal and/or the principal’s designee.
(4) The principal and/or the principal’s designee may make an exception if the building/classroom is unusually cold.
D. Shoes, Sneakers, and Boots (Footwear)
(1) Footwear must be worn at all times, and, as needed, shoes shall conform to special requirements, e.g., P.E. classes, ROTC, science labs, etc.
(2) Laces on shoes or sneakers must be tied.
(3) Flip flops, Crocs, or slippers are not permitted.
(4) Heelies are not permitted.
(5) Shoes must be closed toe, solid black, brown or white. Sneakers, loafers or heels may be worn. Heels must not exceed two (2) inches and must be closed heel or with a back strap.
(6) Socks may be solid white and additional colors designated by the school. Socks may be no longer than the height of the leg calf.
Other Clothing Items or Accessories
a. Students may not wear large pendants or medallions. Oversized jewelry or colorful beads are not permitted. School administration has the final say on determining whether a pendant or medallion is large or not.
b. Any adornment that could be perceived as, or used as, a weapon such as chains, spikes, etc. is not permitted.
c. Gang-related clothing, accessories, symbols or intimidating items of dress, as identified by local law enforcement agencies, are not permitted.
d. Head coverings of any kind, including but not limited to, hats, caps, bandanas, curlers, masks, visors, kerchiefs, athletic sweatbands, earmuffs, sunglasses or hoods are not permitted. Head coverings shall not be worn, carried, hung on belts or around the neck or kept in classrooms during regular school hours.
Other Uniform Requirements
a. Students are expected to be dressed according to the uniform standards at all times when school is in session.
b. Students who are taking classes that require a special dress code, such as JROTC or career and technical education internships, may wear that uniform to other classes.
c. Principals may make exceptions to the uniform policy for special events, such as picture day, and may allow a different standard for athletic teams or other school clubs or activities.
d. Clothing designed for school athletic events, e.g., cheerleader outfits, that does not meet the above guidelines shall not be worn during the instructional day unless appropriate additional garments are worn with the outfit.
First Offense: Students shall be informed that they have violated the policy. They shall be given an opportunity to change into acceptable clothing by using available clothes at school or by calling a parent/guardian to bring clothes. If neither of these options is used, students may be placed in an in-school suspension alternative setting for the remainder of the day.
Second Offense: A second infraction of the policy shall be considered as defiance. In addition to the disciplinary actions available for a first offense, a parent/guardian conference shall be held.
Third Offense and Additional Offenses: A third or additional infraction of the dress code shall be categorized as a Level 1 Offense as outlined in the Beaufort County School District Code of Student Conduct ( Policy ___ and Procedure ____), subject to the consequences outlined therein, including out-of-school suspension. Disciplinary action may vary when a student has a record of other student conduct violations during a current school year.
Students who do not comply with the dress code may be excluded from participating in certain extracurricular school programs. Copies of the dress code shall be made available to students and parents.
Reasonable consideration shall be made for those students who, because of a sincerely held religious belief or medical reason, request a waiver of a particular guideline for dress or appearance. The waiver request shall be in writing from the parent or guardian and approved by the principal and/or principal’s designee on an annual basis. In considering a waiver request, the principal and/or principal’s designee has the right to request additional documentation from medical officials and/or religious leaders.
New students to the school will be given a two-week grace period from enrollment to obtain and wear the proper school uniforms.
Approved by Beaufort County Board of Education on February 17, 2009.
Revised April 5, 2010.