Code of Conduct
Section VIII: Student dress code
This dress code is intended to support the following district values:
- We celebrate students’ differences and individuality and encourage students to present themselves in a way that is most reflective of their true selves.
- We support students in expressing their preferred identity, including gender, race and culture, and in wearing hairstyles historically associated with race, religion, and/or culture.
- We believe district staff are responsible for ensuring that student appearance does not interfere with a safe educational environment for all students, faculty and staff.
- We believe that no person’s attire is responsible for any other person’s ability to maintain focus.
- We believe that a clear and simple dress code minimizes unnecessary conflict between students and staff and increases the opportunity to develop caring relationships.
- We believe that we are preparing students for college and career readiness and that includes learning that certain settings have rules and expectations for attire and appearance.
For those reasons we establish the following dress code:
Throughout this dress code, the word attire means appearance including clothing, hats and head coverings, jewelry, accessories, makeup, hairstyle, nail decor, etc.
- Wear clothing that covers the following with opaque material: genitals, buttocks, nipples, and the area from the nipples to the bottom of the rib cage.
- Wear shoes with soles (including, but not limited to sneakers, boots, sandals, etc.) in which they can navigate the building safely. Elementary students must wear shoes with either an enclosed back or heel strap.
Students’ attire must not:
- Interfere with the operation of the school or create a reasonably foreseeable risk of such interference.
- Obscure the student’s identity unless necessary to accommodate a medical or religious purpose.
- Include items that are vulgar, or obscene.
- Be libelous or denigrate others, especially on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, ethnicity, religion or religious expression, creed, national origin, weight, cultural observance, household income, or body type/size.
- Include gang-related paraphernalia of any kind.
- Include underwear as the primary attire or outer layer.
- Include language or symbols that constitute hate symbols or speech as defined by Education Law Section 1527-a, which includes, but is not limited to, symbols of white supremacy, neo-Nazi ideology, or the Battle Flag of the Confederacy.
- Promote, endorse, or include images of weapons, alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, or illegal drugs.
- Encourage any type of illegal or violent activity.
- Include accessories that could be dangerous or could be used as a weapon including but not limited to items with spikes.
Specific Activity Dress Codes
Certain classes or activities may have different attire expectations, such as sneakers for physical education, athletic wear including sports bras for sports practices, swimsuits for swimming, business attire for certain clubs, costumes for plays, protective eye wear and closed-toe shoes in certain CTE workshops and science labs, hairnets in culinary arts classes, etc.
Specific activity dress codes must be consistent with the values expressed in this policy, and must be shared in advance in writing.
Third Party Dress Codes
Attire during certain classes or activities may be regulated by dress codes established by a third party. For example, athletic team uniforms are established by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, and JROTC uniforms are governed by the military sponsor.
When there is a conflict between the district dress code and any third-party dress code, district staff will clarify for students when each dress code is in force.
District staff will also support students in advocating for improvements to third party dress codes if necessary to ensure that such codes are gender neutral and do not reinforce historic marginalization or oppression of any group.
Each building principal or their designee shall be responsible for informing all students and their parents of the student dress code at the beginning of the school year and any revisions to the dress code made during the school year.
All staff members shall enforce the dress code consistently and in a manner that does not reinforce marginalization or oppression of any group based on race, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion, cultural observance, household income, or body type/size.
Students will be given every opportunity to come into compliance with the dress code without needing to leave school including the opportunity to remove or add attire, borrow attire from the school or from other students, or to contact their family to request alternate attire be brought to school.