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  • 1.  Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-04-2019 12:14 AM
    I would like to have opinions/policy statements on teaching staff requirements for a uniform dress code. Students do not wear uniforms. I am opposed to this proposed requirement, and would appreciate assistance in articulating this stance. 

  • 2.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-04-2019 05:28 PM

    Hi Jeanette,

    I once worked for a preschool that had a uniform for teachers. We needed to wear white polo shirts and black pants/ knee length skirts/or capris. All shoes needed to be closed toe. I really liked it because it was very easy to dress in the mornings. We bought our own white polo shirts from stores such as Walmart and black pants/skirts/or capris. The only issue I had was that we needed to wear a green apron with the school's logo on top of this that made movement a little harder.

    I think uniforms are a great option for teachers. It makes outfit choices in the morning a breeze and helps employers reduce the problem of workers who may wear inappropriate clothing to work (showing too much cleavage etc.) less likely to occur. In the long run, it is also a more economical choice for teachers too. You would only need to buy 5 or so polo shirts/pants for a week's worth of outfits and replace when needed.

    Another wonderful option would be to have your school's logo printed on a polo that the teachers could wear with pants or jeans. You could then offer it for a reduced price or free during the hiring process. The teacher (s) could then buy additional shirts, but this would be a great start to their work wardrobe.

    Jennifer United States

  • 3.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-05-2019 12:38 PM
    I agree with Jennifer on this.  Am I really more professional or a better teacher when I wear khakis than when I wear clean jeans and a clean T shirt?  To me there is no reason to have uniforms other than to 'corporatize" me as a teacher and to make us look the same (bland).  In general I'm not in favor of centers having this kind of control over teachers.

    I understand the need to have a dress code--no holes in clothes, no clothes that are too revealing, no slogans/sayings on clothes that are sexual, etc.  Two factors that need to be considered are that teachers need to be comfortable enough to sit on the floor, in tiny chairs, etc., and they will inevitable get paint, food, etc. on their clothes.

    I also liked hearing feedback from teachers who appreciate having a dress code.  I've heard similar feedback from parents whose children go to school in uniforms.  I wonder what is driving your particular school to make this change and I wonder if there can be an option for a uniform shirt, but not a requirement.

    Aren Stone
    Child Development Specialist
    The Early Years Project
    Cambridge, MA

  • 4.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-05-2019 12:48 PM
    Thank you all for your comments. You are all very helpful. We are a parent participation program, an admin staff recently enrolled her child, she walked into the classroom and was frustrated that she was not immediately able to identify the teacher, therefor, she is pushing for uniforms. Personally, I am pleased that our parent participates are so comfortable and capable in the classroom that they appear to be professional. We have done our job well!

    Jeanette Antaki
    Livermore CA

  • 5.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-05-2019 01:14 AM
    I'm not a big fan of uniforms.  At my school we have to  wear cloths with the school logo that we can order.  A polo, sweater, or fleece vest. It's not as bad as a shirt and tan or black pants that some schools require. I feel it gives a more institutional feel to wear a uniform.  Even though I work in a preschool/ childcare I am a teacher. I'm think we should look and act like educators just as public school teachers do.  I believe there should be a dress code to ensure teachers look professional.

    Debora Johnson
    Lead Teacher
    Leesburg Open Arms
    Leesburg VA

  • 6.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-05-2019 08:09 AM
    My center requires that we wear uniform shirts. They are a single color with the center's logo embroidered on them. As long as they are the right color, they can be almost any style as long as they have sleeves. It's nice because we can purchase our own short sleeve, long sleeve, fleece, vests, etc... They do the emroidery at our job site. I agree that uniforms make it easier to get dressed in the morning. It also makes for less wear and tear on "my clothes" which is nice. To break it up a little, we have theme days on Friday and everyone has the option of wearing a uniform shirt or dressing to the theme.

    Kris Tabor-Hall

    Kris Tabor-Hall
    Andover NH

  • 7.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-05-2019 11:08 AM
    Hello Everyone!

    I do not believe that Early Childhood Educators should have uniforms, however I do believe that a proper professional dress code should be enforced as we are "Professional Educators" With this said Public School Educators for Early Childhood Classroom do not need to wear a uniform as they are dressed professionally and treated as such. By having your Educators wear a uniform you are stating to parents that the Educators you have employed are not professional enough to know how to dress appropriately. When hiring educators at your Preschool /Early Learning School it should be stated verbally and written in the staff book that the proper wearing of clothing daily should be only professional wear such as knee high dresses /skirts ,button down blouses / jeans without holes in them, etc. I have worked in many professional schools and it is spelled out clearly that " Professional Wear " is of utmost importance to value our Educators as Educators and not babysitters.

    Milagros Neu
    Pre-K Teacher
    French American Academy
    Edgewater NJ

  • 8.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-05-2019 11:26 AM
    Hi Milagros,

    I do agree that early childhood educators should be treated as professionals. I worked in centers that allowed employees to wear their own clothing and have noted that even though we had an employee handbook it was not followed or enforced. People would come to work in jeans (not dress code), low-cut clothing, items with slogans on them, and too short clothing. It all depends on the center and management. I think that professionalism comes more from a person's work ethic, how they carry themselves, and attitude then the way that they dress.

    Uniforms can be used as a way to enhance employee loyalty by reducing clothing fees and giving the center an overall polished appearance.

    Jennifer United States

  • 9.  RE: Teaching staff uniform

    Posted 07-08-2019 10:10 AM
    We have always had a "Dress code" but it was quite lax--shorts no more than 2 inches above the knee, not revealing, no slogans promoting drugs and alcohol, jeans with no holes, etc. Through the years it became more and more lax especially with our aides but also with our Lead Teachers. Yoga pants and leggings is what finally pushed us over the edge to create a more "uniformed" look. Lead teachers are now required to wear jeans or capris and a polo with our logo. Aides are required jeans and a T shirt with our logo. I think it is important to note that all Lead Teachers had a say in the dress code policy and it helped to make the transition smoother and allowed some individual freedom.

    This has been a positive change that took a couple of months for everyone to embrace. Some changes I have noticed is first the Lead teachers--they have told us that they feel more productive being dressed a little less casually. Another change is with the current and perspective parents, it feels as if they are looking at us more as professionals and not just the "day care" -and it is showing in our enrollment numbers. The last big change we have noticed is when students are observing the program they are able to visually tell the difference between Aide and Lead teachers.

    Laura Richardson
    Jefferson College CDC
    Hillsboro MO