Posted: Apr 17, 2014 9:45 AM
 
A Broward County, Florida, school board member wants to enact a school dress code… for parents. While Rosalind Osgood admits it would be basically non-enforceable, she believes it would encourage students to dress more appropriately and make it easier to enforce the current dress code for students.
Photo credit: Jani Bryson/ iStock/360/ Getty Images

My home state of Florida is known for the weird and wacky. In recent Florida news, there has been the road rage tailgater, the topless McDonald's vandal, and now this: the school board member who wants a dress code for parents. Rosalind Osgood, a member of the Broward County, Florida, school board, recently proposed a dress code for any parents entering onto school property — even just in the car line to drop off and pick up their children. "We have dads showing up in sagging pants," she said during a school board discussion. "It's hard for me to tell a child not to show up for school with hair curlers, pajamas or short shorts if they see parents wearing them. Parents need to lead by example."

It's hard for me to tell a child not to show up for school with hair curlers, pajamas or short shorts if they see parents wearing them. Parents need to lead by example.

While Osgood makes an excellent point, is a dress code for parents the way to address the issue? Especially if the parents aren't even getting out of the car? I took to social media to see what everyday moms and dads had to say about the concept of dress codes for parents. Surprisingly, not all were against it.

"This is why they invented the car line, correct?"

The school should be focusing on educating our kids and keeping them safe while on campus, not policing what parents are wearing.

Megan P. shared her opinion concisely with one sentence: "This is why they invented the car line, correct?" Her thoughts were echoed by many, including Kasandra K. who said, "If I'm covered, be happy. Period. Also slippers with a rubber bottom = shoes." Michelle Maffei also agreed with this train of thought, saying, "Give me a break. The school should be focusing on educating our kids and keeping them safe while on campus, not policing what parents are wearing."

"It starts with good intentions…"

Others went beyond the comical absurdity of the notion to the possible ramifications of such reaching oversight. Jen C. says, "If the school starts dress codes then who is to say (it) would stop there; what about grocery stores, malls, etc. I don't want the right taken away from me to wear sweats or even my pajamas if I am so inclined for the in-and-out drop off I will be doing." Laura S. continued on with that thought, saying, "Certainly parents should set an example, but each parent has his or her own opinion about what is appropriate, and it's not the school's responsibility or business to try to influence that. And with any rule or regulation that starts with good intentions, there's a slippery slope."

"There shouldn't be a need…"

We keep talking about how disrespectful this generation coming up is, but do realize that they learned it somewhere.

Still others looked to the greater social issue behind even needing a dress code for parents, saying adults should already be dressing in an appropriate manner. Tony L. said, "The real tragedy is this is a topic and legitimate concern." Cully L. continued on with that same idea: "There shouldn't be a need for any ludicrous policy. However, the same could be said for most of the laws on the books. We keep talking about how disrespectful this generation coming up is, but do realize that they learned it somewhere." Parenting expert Katie Hurley threw in her two cents saying, "The fact is that our kids look up to us. What message do we send when we can't find five minutes to throw on jeans and a sweater?"

"Honestly it's probably best for the kids"

In my opinion, if there was a rule that said you can't wear yellow on Thursday it wouldn't matter how dumb I thought it was. If it's their rule, then you have to follow it and that's what we as parents need to be teaching our kids, any age.

A few moms could see the need for parental dress codes. Casey F. shared, "I have witnessed, on several occasions, parents dressed like they were on their way to audition for a 2LiveCrew music video. Not kidding. Bikini tops, short shorts and skirts with butt cheeks hanging out — and they're there for a scheduled meeting." Suzette G. said, "I am for the adult dress code. [Perhaps it] could help make them aware of what respectable attire is and what is acceptable when they are out and not at home behind closed doors." Robin A. agreed, saying, "How do you expect kids to have respect for rules and authority when other adults are disrespectful. In my opinion, if there was a rule that said you can't wear yellow on Thursday it wouldn't matter how dumb I thought it was. If it's their rule, then you have to follow it and that's what we as parents need to be teaching our kids, any age." And Ashlee C. said, "I see what they are trying to do, and honestly it's probably best for the kids. Aren't there fancy restaurants who enforce proper dress attire? And that's simply to have a nice meal. If it is enforced, perhaps the kids would take into consideration why it had to be done. Maybe it would bring them to the realization that sometimes people dress foolishly."

Regardless, it's unenforceable

I probably agree best with Casey F. "Drop-off dress code requirements are ridiculous, especially if you're just chillin' in a car lane. An official dress code requirement for staff, students and visitors is appropriate and enforceable in my opinion. Parents that are inappropriately dressed should go no farther than the front lobby." And that is all that will likely happen. Even school board member Osgood readily admits a parental dress code would be basically unenforceable. Her and board member Robin Bartleman's solution? Address the issue at parents' night, or hold a forum: "We might even make it into a fashion show."

Wait. Now instead of a dress code they want a parent fashion show? I take back my earlier statement. My vote is with Tammy V.: "Just another reason to homeschool."

More on parents' rights

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New Kansas spanking law would make it legal to leave a mark
Children: Who do they belong to?

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