Credit Where Credit Is Due

I am happy to announce that the administration of my school has relaxed a most cumbersome element of the student dress code. From now on, boys will not have to tuck in their shirts. (Girls never had to for some reason never explained.)

This is great news and a significant concession to common sense. We teachers spent a great deal of time (well, not me) telling boys to tuck in there shirts. Nobody ever seemed quite sure why we did this. We just did. (Again, not me.)

I truly want to give the admin big props for changing a policy that was just not working in the sense that it took up a lot of teacher time, created a lot of strife, and had no clear relationship to anything that had to do with learning. The odd thing is that I learned about this policy change at a party at somebody’s house who doesn’t even work there anymore. I had noticed that shirts were curiously untucked, especially for the first week, and was happy to just let it roll. As far as I can tell there was no official communication about this policy change. We would just firgure it out.

I’m glad they changed the rule. All I’m saying, and maybe they’ll do it at some future meeting, is it would have been nice to hear them say “That just wasn’t working and we’ve decided to change it because it was wasting a lot of time.”

But the shirts was nothing compared to this freaky charter school I taught at for one year. The principal there had a black shoe fetish. That’s all I can guess. He would make everybody were black shoes. If a kid showed up with black shoes that had a small white stripe, they would make him put electrical tape over the stripe.

C’mon, Garrett…Really?

Mr. Teachbad

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4 Responses to Credit Where Credit Is Due

  1. Kal Varnson says:

    I thought about this for a few minutes:

    “it would have been nice to hear them say ‘That just wasn’t working and we’ve decided to change it because it was wasting a lot of time.'”

    and I realized just how nice it would be to hear “them” say anything honestly and truthfully. All we have heard since the year started is we are doing a great job that is not getting the job done.

    It took me 30 minutes into our first meeting to remember the primary reason the job drives me crazy, and it is not the kids, the curriculum, or the teaching.

    It’s them.

    Bourbon me.

  2. teachj says:

    Yeah, dress code enforcement is a waste of perfectly good instructional time. Unless the student is showing excessive skin, undergarments or private bits or is wearing something vulgar or promoting illegal behavior – I really don’t see it as an issue. Google and other companies have proven that having happy employees – zero dress code means increased productivity. Don’t we want more productive students? It also increases student resentment of “the man” when we have to get into fights over lip or nose piercings, etc.

  3. Louise says:

    Here’s my parental system: you make the rule, you enforce it. Here’s my school system: you make the rule, you enforce it. Probably there has been no official rule change, just that the rule-makers decided it was a lot more fun to make rules than to enforce them. There will be more idiotic rules.
    Here’s my rule: come in undramatically, try and learn something new, don’t pee on the floor when you do. I work on enforcement every day.

  4. istheresocialjustice says:


    and it only took 4 years to decide to change a senseless policy!

    official communication? come on now, check the holy script of the weekly bulletin! if it’s not written in there, then assume the default of the ever efficient “word of mouth” official communication which may or may not be reliable depending on the source, the time of the day, and the vote of confidence given by your floor’s administrator.

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