Last week’s start to the school year was one of the smoothest in years in spite of implementation of a new uniform policy, Janet Valentine, superintendent for the Flagler County School District, said at the Tuesday workshop.
Valentine told the Flagler County School Board that there were a few bumps in the transition to uniforms, but that she was pleased overall with the way the year started.
“I know there are some folks out there who have had issues (with the uniform policy), but when you see that sea of students who are so well-dressed and well-groomed, you kind of feel differently about it,” she said. “I’m not usually the kind of person who would support something like that, but I’ve changed my views.”
A high priority for district officials right now is making sure that the uniform policy is clear for all school administrators, students and parents. The Discipline Review Committee is handling any vagueness or discrepancies in the policy and updating the question-and-answer section on the district’s website with updated policies.
“We’re certainly not trying to nitpick, but we’re trying to be sure that we’re applying this policy and its consequences (for breaking it) consistently across the district,” Valentine said.
One area in which further clarification is needed is in terms of athletic uniforms. Some schools allowed student athletes to wear their jerseys to school on game day last week, while some did not, parents told the School Board at its meeting.
“I’m the team mom for my eighth-grade son’s football team,” Susan Miller told the board. “I had to tell them they couldn’t wear their jerseys. Why? What’s more American than wearing their jerseys to represent what they’re a part of?”
Valentine said this is just the type of issue that will be reviewed by the committee, and that they would reach a decision and post it on the district’s website so there would be a blanket policy for all Flagler County schools.
As of Thursday morning, the uniform question-and-answer section on the district’s website reads, “On designated school Spirit Days or special events, students may wear their school logo T-shirt, team jersey, or club shirt.”
Sue Dickinson, School Board chairwoman, said that any new policy needs time to be fine-tuned, but that the policy would soon be clear to everyone.
“We’re working on it; give us a chance,” she said.
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