GVHS: No Rollerblades, but Jean Jackets OK

Dress code guidelines from Great Valley High School.

As back-to-school shopping gets into full swing, August is a good time to review Great Valley School District's dress code policies.

's long list of bullet points is the most explicit dress code in the district, and the elementary schools basically have a pared down version (PDF) of the high school's policy.

The high school policy, updated in 2002, is mostly common sense, but it begs questions, like: Did students try to wear skates to class at some point?

Here is the relevant passage from the GVHS student handbook:


In August, 2002, the School Board approved revisions to Policy #221 - Dress and Grooming. The High School Faculty Advisory Committee, who researched neighboring school’s dress and grooming policies, recommended the changes. The revised Policy was adopted on August 19, 2002. The following is a summary of the Policy describing the rational and expectations.

“The Board authorizes the Superintendent to enforce school regulations prohibiting student dress or grooming practices which present a hazard to the health or safety of the student him/herself or to others in the school; materially interfere with school work, create disorder or disrupt the educational program; cause excessive wear or damage to school property and prevent the student from achieving his/her own educational objectives because of blocked vision or restricted movement...”

The dress code as outlined below will be in effect at Great Valley High School. The basic responsibility for the appearance of students rests with the parents. Students are, however, expected to attend school in clothing that is clean and appropriate. While parents have the right to determine their child’s dress, the following guidelines will be followed:

• Dress must not interfere with the educational process or the rights of others.

• Dress must comply with all health and safety codes.

• Shoes must be worn at all times. Roller blades and/or roller sneakers are not permitted in the building due to safety and liability issues.

• The wearing of (hats, scarves, bandannas, etc.) or any other non- religious head covering is prohibited in the building. Students found wearing policy-violating headwear should surrender the headwear to a staff member on request and pick it up at the end of the school day.

• Clothing that includes or exhibits profane language, obscene or racist language, provocative pictures, or advertisements for alcohol, drugs, alcohol establishments or drug products is prohibited.

• No halters, tube tops, sports bras or exposed midriffs are allowed. Tank tops must have secure straps.

• Fishnet shirts or other see-through clothing may not be worn unless there is appropriate coverage underneath.

• Tops may not be so low as to expose cleavage or pectoral muscles. Likewise, shirts and blouses must completely cover a student’s back, side, chest and abdomen. V-neck shirts and sweaters are permissible as long as they adhere to the above stated criteria.

• Clothing, patches, buttons, pins, jewelry and backpacks are not permitted if they: have sexually suggestive writing or pictures, advocate violence, advertise or promote the use of alcohol, tobacco or drugs, or have double-meaning wording or obscene language/gestures or are racist.

• Skirts, shorts and dresses should be long enough to cover the posterior when a student is sitting, standing or bending. Pants also must cover the posterior and undergarments.

• Clothing intended as underwear may not be exposed. Outer clothing must cover undergarments (briefs, boxers, bikinis, bras) at all times.

• Clothing intended for outerwear including heavy winter coats or jackets and rainwear may not be worn during school time unless approved by an administrator or classroom teacher. Lightweight, unobtrusive or jean jackets are permitted. 

If student attire is determined inappropriate, the student will be given an opportunity to call home for a change of clothing. If a change is not immediately available, the student will either be detained in the office or sent home for the balance of the day. The classes missed as a result will be considered unexcused absences.

's dress code (PDF) is essentially the same as GVHS's above, but it includes an extra, conciliatory paragraph:

The Board recognizes that each student's mode of dress and grooming is a manifestation of personal style and individual preference. The Board will not interfere with the right of students and their parents/guardians to make decisions regarding their appearance except when their choices affect the educational program of the schools or the health and safety of others.

Jon B. August 04, 2012 at 04:47 PM
Remember the fad of Heelys a few years ago? I imagine that was at least partially where the rollerblade bit comes from.
Sarah Acuna August 05, 2012 at 11:58 PM
I think rent an under classmen day might have also played a hand in this one. Then the part about the roller sneakers was added when Heelys came out like Jon. B. said.


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