School Administrators Welcome Fashion Into Their Dress Codes

Remember the uniform days of khakis, loafers and polo shirts? Most likely, you weren’t a fan. The wardrobe choices were limited, the guidelines were super strict, and, even worse, everyone went to class looking the same. But things are rounding up to be a little different for the trendy students Generation Next.

In the public high school district of New Jersey, they’re allowing their kids to wear leggings to school. “At first they couldn’t accessorize, but then again, how do you tell someone what color shoes to buy? That’s ridiculous,” said Beverly J. Hutton, principal of educational services for Burlington County Institute of Technology. “We said no leggings, but, you know, you can’t control that — they have leggings that look like jeans now. So we just ask them to stay within the color scheme and to abide by the code as far as modesty.”

The administrators at Charlotte, N.C.’s Martin Luther King Jr. middle school even started involving their students in the process of revamping their uniforms. “If the people who are going to have to follow the rules are involved in establishing the rules, you have a lot more buy-in and a lot more cooperation than if it’s forced upon them,” said assistant principal Janet Moss.

Not only are academic institutions becoming more lenient in their dress codes, but clothing companies are also beginning to cater to the school style renaissance. According to The New York Times, retailers like French Toast are offering a wide array chic uniform alternatives, including slim-cut blouses, shawl-collar cardigans, and even fleece pea coats.

“Schools really do adjust to fashion,” said Matt Buesing, French Toast’s school marketing coordinator. “It may not fit their code exactly, but the administrators in the school say, ‘That’s an acceptable shirt — we should allow it.’”

We’re certainly down for the cause.