River Oaks Academy
School Uniform Plan
I. Educational Value
The PTA, school population, and Administration of River Oaks Academy have voted for the implementation of uniforms for all scholars for the opening of our school. We want to implement an academic setting with high expectations for scholars, staff, and parents, thus creating a true “Professional Learning Community” where scholars are intrigued with learning and excited about school in a myriad of settings. A uniform dress code provides scholars and parents with an opportunity to focus on the reason we attend school, without distractions or feelings of inadequacy. Listed below are some of the potential benefits of school uniforms; several of the statements are researched-based:
- Uniforms will give the scholars at River Oaks Academy something in common and will promote pride in their school’s appearance (Stanley, 1996).
- Uniforms are found to level the ‘learning field’ as well as promote a community of learners.
- Uniforms promote teamwork, unity and pride for our school.
- Uniforms do not emphasize a particular brand or style of clothing. This removes any difference in clothing between economic levels.
- Uniforms are inexpensive in comparison to name brand clothing.
- They are available at a number of local stores including Wal-Mart, Target, JC Penney’s, Famous Mart, and Educational Outfitters.
- Uniforms improve school behavior, resulting in few discipline problems, allowing the focus to remain where it should, on academics.
- Uniforms eliminate the morning hassle parents face with scholars deciding what to wear.
- Uniforms will help identify scholars when going on field trips and keep them safer.
- Uniforms will help school officials in recognizing intruders (Uriyo, 2000).
- Uniforms will help minimize the socio-economic differences among students (Caruso, 1996).
II. Type, Cost and Color of Uniforms
- Scholars will be required to wear the navy or khaki pants/shorts/jumpers/skirts/skorts and navy and white tops with collars. Girls may also wear the plaid pants/shorts/jumpers/skirts/skorts. Tops must have sleeves, long or short and be in good repair.
- Shorts, skirts and skorts and must be long enough to extend past the scholar’s fingertips when arms are held to the side. Trousers must be worn so as to rise above the hips and not drag the floor. Sagging pants will not be appropriate school attire.
- Navy or white sweaters or sweatshirts may be worn on top of the shirt. Closed toe shoes must be worn. No sandals or flip flops will be permitted. The use of a belt will be encouraged. Blue jeans may not be worn as a part of the uniform. T-shirts of any color may not be worn as a part of the uniform code with the exception of the River Oaks Academy spirit shirts on designated days.
- School uniforms are now available at a number of local stores, thrift stores and Good Will. They are also available by mail order from several companies. The price range at one local store is from $5.99 - $15.00 per article of clothing. Information will be provided to parents on local department stores that sell uniforms. All items will be readily available in many Wal-Mart, Target and JCPenney, Famous Mart and Educational Outfitter stores.
III. Provisions for Adequate Number of Uniforms for Student
- River Oaks Academy will make the effort to provide families with the opportunity to purchase uniforms at the school site, but will not directly sell uniforms.
River Oaks will contact sponsors who will be asked to donate money to establish an initial fund for the purchase of uniforms for families who cannot afford to do so themselves. The school will also seek partnerships to assist with sponsoring scholars.
In many cases, the school uniform will be less expensive than the clothing students typically wear to school. However, several steps will be taken to ensure that all students participate in the program.
- Uniform sponsors will be recruited by the School Leadership Team and the Community Relations Committee.
- Through this combined effort, no student will be denied a uniform based on the inability to pay.
IV. Involvement of Parents in the Implementation of the Uniform Plan
- The PTA, members of the School Leadership team and Administration discussed the need and advisability of school uniforms in the spring of 2009. All parties investigated and discussed CMS policies and procedures. Parents were polled through several venues: letters mailed home, face to face meetings, the school website, Connect Ed, and individual phone calls.
- Information was shared as to the process of adopting a uniform policy for the upcoming school year. Parents were provided information about the positive effects that uniforms have on scholars’ achievement through flyers/ballots that were sent home with the scholars, through multiple Connect-ED communications, individual phone calls, as well as ballots being placed on the school website.
- Parents will remain involved in implementation of the plan by ensuring that their scholars are dressed in the school uniform, by aiding in the enforcement of the plan, and by donating clothing to the school “clothes closet”.
- Our school families voted and received the system requirement of having at least 70% of the families participating in the survey. Of those participating, we met the required 75% approval of uniforms for River Oaks Academy. Parent members of the School Leadership Team and parent volunteers will be actively involved in the implementation and maintenance of the uniform plan.
- The uniform plan will be incorporated into our School Improvement Plan and, as such, will be reviewed each year.
V. Enforcement of the Plan
- All students will be expected to wear school uniforms beginning with the first week of school.
- School staff will clearly communicate to parents and students the uniform policy guidelines. The following will be noted in response to students who are not wearing uniforms:
1st occurrence – reminder from teacher in the Parent Communication Log or agenda.
2nd occurrence – a call from school to ask for correct attire to be brought to school.
3rd occurrence – contact from administration for conference with parent.