Metro public school parents are scratching their heads over the latest earth-shaking wrinkle in the MNPS school attire saga: the crucial matter of hoodies. Although the “standard school attire” policy
was implemented systemwide, it’s an open secret around the city that different principals have implemented it with varying degrees of tolerance for deviation and enforcement alacrity. Now that colder weather has arrived, bringing with it chillier buildings, some principals are allowing students to wear hooded sweatshirts, while others are apparently sticking with the policy’s formal guideline on outerwear: “a single blazer, suit jacket, vest, sweater, or cardigan is permitted as a garment that may be worn over the Standard Attire top” (shirt with a collar).
This raises challenging questions: Is a hooded sweatshirt a type of “sweater”? Or perhaps it can be framed as a “blazer”? Will hooded sweatshirts in classrooms bring down the Republic? Who can possibly sort out this mess? Clearly, it’s another case for intrepid MNPS Chief Administrative Offer Ben Wright, who earlier this week offered up the latest in his ongoing series
of must-see communiqués, this one an email to all MNPS principals (reproduced here verbatim as provided to Pith
I am getting many calls from parents and principals about hoodies; please remember that we do have a policy against hoodies in school, however we no not have a policy in regards to what outer garment students may wear to school. I recall this exact question coming up at the principals meeting in regards to hooded sweat shirts that were being sold at school with the school logo on them in regards to students being able to wear those. Parents have called to question why should they purchase clothing form the school that their children cannot wear; we have told parents that the policy is what it is, therefore I am asking you to use your best judgment in dealing with these issues. I know that some of you think that this mean that hoodies are allowed to be worn during school, when in reality, the policy did not change.
Wright points out that the word “hoodie” appears nowhere in the school attire policy. School officials, he tells us, will be discussing these matters further during the first week of January.