DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

February 6, 2014

Pinkerton still undecided on dress code issue

By Julie Huss
jhuss@derrynews.com

---- — DERRY — There is still no word on how Pinkerton Academy may handle a decision on the way students dress.

School officials have been considering putting a stricter dress code into place, something the administration began to explore last fall.

A “unified dress code” would put restrictions on what students could and could not wear, and would include a set list of wardrobe choices including approved mix-and-match garments like khaki plants, shirts, blazers and sweaters.

Right now, the Pinkerton dress code prohibits tank tops, dresses with spaghetti straps or any tops that have shoulder straps less than 2 inches wide. Shorts and skirts can be no higher than knee length.

School administrators said having a unified look would help equalize students, be better for security reasons, and would also help streamline the time staff uses to violate the dress code rules that are currently in place.

“The amount of time that our staff spends addressing dress code issues is ridiculous,” Headmaster Mary Anderson said at a parents meeting last September, “especially for our male staff, I don’t like putting them in that position.”

Parents are both for and against the measure.

“I will support any decision the school makes,” Trisha Kort wrote on Facebook earlier this month. “I see no issue in expecting them to dress in appropriate clothing at school.”

Others who signed an online petition said changing to a more unified look could be costly for families, and will take away from students’ individuality.

“Uniforms are also costly,” Alice Bobroff wrote on the petition site, “and inconvenient.”

The online petition currently has 280 signatures.

But no decision has been made yet at the school level and nothing may be done until later in the year.

Administrators reported to Pinkerton’s sending towns earlier this month that more work needed to be done.

“A unified dress code is still under consideration, but we continue to research it,” Anderson said. “Any proposal by administration would be presented to the Board of Trustees; however, there’s no fixed timing for that.”

The petition is still up and running at change.org calling for people to sign up to oppose any new wardrobe choices.