Every year we receive two perky messages from the school about what the children are wearing. One comes in December, when we are reminded that "Gone are the days of heat waves and sandals!!" and the other comes in May, when we are similarly prompted to look out our windows and observe changes in the weather. I am annoyed EVERY TIME, even though I KNOW there is a need for such notices. No, I KNOW. Do not tell me I would be surprised: I would NOT be surprised, because I ALREADY KNOW.
But my own children are NOT wearing flip-flops in the snow, or bikini tops and short shorts as soon as it hits 70 degrees, and so I don't like to have someone CHIRPING at me about it as if "we" forgot to take "our" "meds" this morning. I wish there were a practical way to send these notices only to those who need them. NO, I GET IT, THERE IS NO PRACTICAL WAY. But are we also in general agreement that the people who NEED to be told that their children should not wear flip-flops in the snow are NOT going to be affected by a school-wide chirpy little notice? "Oh! The school is right: flip-flops and snow DON'T go together! Silly old me, I'd forgotten the days were getting shorter and Old Man Winter was on his way!"
This is Rob's first year of middle school, and HA HA HA HA HA! Oh, I do feel SO SORRY for the middle school staff. I can picture their weary postures, and the way they go home to their spouses and say "You would not BELIEVE how much RIGHTEOUS ANGER an 8th-grade girl can manufacture over the definition of the word 'crop top.' No, you would not believe it. No, don't even try, just...bring me a bottle of wine and a funnel."
I can HEAR in the newsletter that the middle school staff does not WANT to make a dress code. They want to say, "Wear REASONABLE clothing, please, and let's get on with the day." But no: the children push and Push and PUSH, until the staff is FORCED to say things such as "Shoulders of tops must be at least three (3) inches wide." I'm sure that in the beginning they were thinking, as I am, "What's wrong with a tank top?" And many VERY HEADACHEY days later, it's "three inches" and then needing to spell out that "three" = 3.
This one seems to me to come from the calm that only psychiatric medication can provide: "Necklines of shirts should provide thorough coverage of the chest area." THOROUGH! When the writer of that line was in college headed for a career in academia, did he or she think they would be spending time forming that sentence? And would he or she consider changing "chest area" to "chestal region," because that would be way funnier. And then, in the part about the shoulders of tops, I think we should say "shoulderage."
"Undergarments cannot be visible at any time." I'll bet the first draft included "FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, PEOPLE" and a long scream.
"Pajama/lounge pants are not permitted" seems like it is just ASKING for trouble. Does this mean yoga pants? But those are perfectly reasonable pantsage! Is it NO soft pants at all? "All pants must have a snap and a zipper and belt loops, and be made of a sturdy fabric such as canvas or denim; more than 2% spandex is not permitted"? Mark my words, there will be such changes in the next memo!
This is why schools end up thinking to themselves, "You know what? We are done. UNIFORMS." Which only leads to MORE rules. "Waistbands of skirts must not be folded over." "Uniform elements must be the appropriate size, neither slouchy nor skin-tight." "Knee socks must be within one (1) inch of the knee." "Hooker-style thigh-high lace-up boots may not be worn." "Lip balm may not be worn, because we are not talking to ONE MORE middle-school girl about the difference between 'balm' and 'gloss'." "Parents should be advised that their children are a huge pain in the ass. Thank you for your consideration."
Life-improving products, part 4 - (Continued from part 1, part 2, and part 3.) Stearns Youth Life Vest (photo from Amazon.com). I’d been too scared to take the kids to any body of water oth...