The Clovis Unified school board will consider dropping a decades-old policy that forbids boys from growing out their hair and wearing earrings.
The recommended changes to the district’s strict dress code come after concerns surfaced about whether the policy is fair to all genders.
The current dress code requires boys’ hair to be no longer than their shirt collar, and earlobes must be visible. The new proposed policy, which the board will vote Wednesday, strikes that rule but says hairstyles and mustaches must be “neatly groomed and maintained.”
The recommendation also strikes language that miniskirts and dresses are only acceptable for girls.
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Beards still are not allowed, but the new proposal would allow sideburns if they don’t extend past the base of the earlobe. Hairstyles that “cause undue attention,” like Mohawks, still are forbidden.
(The dress code) is and will always be a very important part of the way we help students achieve.
Clovis Unified spokeswoman Kelly Avants
Under the proposal, dresses, skirts and shorts should not be worn any shorter than 5 inches above the top of the knee. Currently, shorts are not to be worn any shorter than 6 inches above the knee, while skirts are to be no shorter than 4 inches above the knee.
Other proposed changes include requiring tattoos to be covered at all times, forbidding sleepwear and slippers, and loosening restrictions on athletic wear. Students would now be allowed to wear athletic shorts with pockets.
The dress code, which has been revised nearly 30 times since it was adopted in 1975, has been questioned by parents over the years. Clovis Unified parents recently spoke out about the dress code, saying it adds stress to students’ school day.
Clovis Unified spokeswoman Kelly Avants emphasized that the district will continue to enforce its dress code seriously.
“First and foremost, what we want our community to know is that our standards are not changing. (The dress code) is and will always be a very important part of the way we help students achieve,” she said. “We are looking specifically at creating a single standard, regardless of student gender.”
If you go
What: Clovis Unified School District board meeting
When: 6:30 p.m. Wednesday
Where: Clovis Unified School District headquarters, 1450 Herndon Ave., Clovis