Teacher dress code: union issue or no?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by karebear76, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. karebear76

    karebear76 Habitué

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    I'm curious. Those of you who have unions, do you also have a dress code? Is it part of the contract language?

    We have a new superintendent this year. I fully expect him to implement a dress code for teachers. Some colleagues seem to think he cannot enforce it because we do not have any language in our master contract to reflect it. We are in negotiations currently, so that could be changed as well.

    So, is dress code a negotiated item in your contract?
     
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  3. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    It is negotiated in our contract. We have no dress code.
     
  4. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    This is more or less true for us as well. We have a guideline of what not to wear, but those things are so outrageous that I have a hard time believing most competent teachers would wear them anyway. In any case, since there is nothing in our contract that says we can't wear jeans every day, for example, we can wear jeans every day, even if our principal or the superintendent doesn't like it.
     
  5. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    This issue is not negotiated into our contract. I've been with my district for over 20 years and I've never heard of a dress code issue arising.
     
  6. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Not negotiated in our contract. No dress code...maybe something loosely worded in faculty handbook about professional dress..it's not an issue for us. Might fall under board policy.
     
  7. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    This is how it is for us as well.
     
  8. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Union says no dress code so anything pretty much goes in my district. I had an AP that would often state at staff meetings that "she wish she could tell us what to wear." She really hated the way the younger teachers dressed. Oh well.
     
  9. karebear76

    karebear76 Habitué

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    Thanks for sharing. I would like to think professional dress would be an understood part of the job, but we all know it isn't always.
     
  10. joeschmoe

    joeschmoe Companion

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    How do the younger teachers dress? In my limited experience, it seems like the younger teachers are the one who tend to dress more appropriately. It's the older ones that really let go.
     
  11. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    Why does the union say no dress code? I think that is kind of silly...there are plenty of jobs where you are expected to dress in a certain manner so it is not abusive :confused:
     
  12. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Abusive?

    In any event, unions often try to limit the power of the district and/or superintendent. It's the whole "give a mouse a cookie" thing. It could also simply be that there is no mention of dress code in the contract, and that the agreement between the union and the district stipulates that anything not expressly included in the contract cannot be enforced by either party.
     
  13. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    Guess I'm just confused why any sort of dress code at all would be a "no-no"

    Oh, well :)
     
  14. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Some, but not all, wear short skirts/dresses, low-cut tops, tank tops with bra straps showing, jeans and sweatshirts/t-shirts (non-school related), etc. - especially after the first month of school. This AP just wanted a more professional look overall and she really hated teachers wearing tight colored leggings with just a top; I remember her once ranting that "leggings are not pants!"
     
  15. Kat53

    Kat53 Devotee

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    I agree. I've never had dress codes outlines in a contract. They were part of district policy. IMO, dress code is not the hill to die on.:2cents:
     
  16. Ted

    Ted Habitué

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    In my experience, when I've dressed less professionally, I'm treated less professionally by my students' families. When I've dressed more professionally, I'm treated more professionally.

    Just my opinion, but if we, as a profession, want to be treated with respect, we should present ourselves in such a way that warrants that respect.

    I can't go to work with an old t-shirt on, and some cut-offs and then wonder why my students or their parents don't take me seriously. :2cents:
     
  17. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I couldn't agree more, Ted!!! :thumb:
     
  18. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    Sarge's Dress Code:

    1. Dress for the body you have, not the body you want.

    2. No toes visible if you have never painted the nails on them.
    In other words, nobody wants to see men's feet.

    3. Nothing torn or frayed.

    4. If your underwear is visible, cover it or get different underwear.

    5. And if the kids are not allowed to wear it, then you can't wear it either.
     
  19. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Our dress code last year was specifically in the contract. My P tried to tell us that we couldn't wear jeans, but it was specifically in the dress code section of the contract that staff can wear jeans with a school shirt on Fridays. The union brought it up and she had to allow us to wear them. The issue wasn't so much just about jeans, if you're wondering why the union chose to get involved over pants. The bigger picture was that the principal needed to be held to following all parts of the contract. There was a concern that if they let her override the contract on that she would feel that she didn't have to honor other contract items (such as plan times or duty free lunch) as well. I think they did the right thing especially since my principal was on a HUGE power trip. She certainly didn't need to be thinking she could just make whatever rules she wanted!
     
  20. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Love it! That about covers it!
     
  21. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    I forgot one.

    6. Only male teachers can wear pink sweats.
     
  22. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    I guess your kids don't have uniforms - no way are the teachers at my school wearing white tops and navy bottoms every. single. day... :D

    There must be a story behind this..:lol:

    I'm not in a union because I work at a charter, so I guess I shouldn't even be responding to this thread. We have a dress code. It's not super strict, but we need to look professional. The only thing that bothers me at all is that we have to wear closed toed shoes with some kind of back strap/back. I had honestly never thought about dress code being a union issue. Learn something new every day...
     
  23. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    no union and there is a dress code. I'm shocked that other places don't have them.

    We have teachers (younger ones, to add to a previous comment) that really push the limits on our current code. If there wasn't one they have admitted that they would go further.

    A couple of them like being the 'hot' teacher @@ and wear super short skirts and revealing tops. One has been sent home to change so she has reeled it in some on the skirt length at least.
     
  24. Geauxtee

    Geauxtee Comrade

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    We have a strict dress code. We don't even have casual fridays :(.
     
  25. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    No dress code outline or mentioned in the contract.

    We do, however, have a somewhat strict dress code at the school level.

    I need a job more than I need to wear jeans to school, so I just go with the flow.
     
  26. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    We have a uniform to wear that I think I am now the only one who follows. It's very relaxed (white top, dark bottoms). I love having a uniform and I wish I had it at every job!!!
     
  27. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    When I was in the Air Force, some people wore their blues to work every day. Other's wore fatigues. It depended on the job you had.

    If you ALWAYS worked in an office, you wore blues. People like accounting and finance, wing headquarters etc. wore blues every day.

    But if you you had a job where you mostly worked in an office, but had to go outside as part of your job now and then, like base operations, freight traffic, etc, then you wore fatigues.

    In my opinion, most teaching positions fall into the latter category. As part of my job, I'm often outside in very cold or very hot weather. I also need to get my hands dirty now and then. Therefore, any dress code for teachers needs to take into account those factors.
     
  28. dave1mo

    dave1mo Comrade

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    That's how it's been in all districts I've taught in; I'll never forget my "mentor" teacher coming to school in sweatpants multiple times throughout my semester with her. Needless to say, I learned a lot about what NOT to do from that experience.
     
  29. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Board policy dictates dress code around here. It's mostly "dress professionally, nothing inappropriate showing"
     
  30. SciTeacherNY

    SciTeacherNY Companion

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    We have no dress code at my school (that I know of!).
     
  31. karebear76

    karebear76 Habitué

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    We were told he didn't want people to wonder if we were there to mow grass, change the oil, teach, or be a janitor. Dress professionally, no jeans or tees Mon thru Thurs. He even specifically mentioned Goodwill as an affordable option. I wasn't surprised but some others seemed shocked. So it isn't a rigid requirement but one that is highly suggested.


    I went shopping for new tops. :)
     
  32. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    I think that it very reasonable; it's not like he's making you wear suits or something, plus I love getting new clothes :lol: That's pretty much what the dress code is at my school also.

    I do hope he has exceptions/understands if some teachers (such as PE teachers) are a bit more casual. Still no need to wear jeans though (plus I would imagine that would be really uncomfortable).
     
  33. blazer

    blazer Connoisseur

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  34. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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  35. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    :lol: I can imagine this one. One of my coworkers had his pants split at work. He wore his jacket around his waist for the rest of the day (and took my advice to keep a change of clothes in the classroom!) but just imagine if he hadn't been wearing underwear :woot:
     
  36. blazer

    blazer Connoisseur

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    Not as strange as you might think. I am a 1st aider at my school and was called to a girl who had passes out. as I stooped to check her pulse my trousers (pants in American) split! I spent the rest of the day wearing my long lab coat! I was wearing pants (Underwear in American)!
     

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