Bangor school board passes dress code revisions

The updated dress code is as much about increased communication as it is about student clothing, according to the school department.

BANGOR, Maine — The Bangor School Committee adopted revisions to its dress code on Wednesday night.

School Department Title IX and Affirmative Action Coordinator Dana Carver-Bialer spearheaded the changes.

“When I was tasked with really looking at this dress code policy, it felt like it was important to do some research, so, to see what other districts were doing, to look at the data. So where are the disparities and issues of inequality? said Carver-Bialer.

The new revisions state that bra and tank top straps and visible waistbands “do not constitute excessive exposure.” Among other changes, bellies must be “reasonably covered” and clothing must cover the “majority of the abdomen”.

Carver-Bialer said the updated dress code was as much about increased communication as it was about student clothing, saying there was no clear message to staff members about what was allowed.

Students may not wear balaclavas or baseball caps for school safety reasons. However, students may wear religious or cultural head coverings.

“I think it speaks to our sense of community and our desire to make sure everyone feels safe and not only respected – that’s not good enough for me – but really celebrated,” Carver said. – Bialer.

The policy also prohibits racist and discriminatory clothing.

Carver-Bialer said the new code gives students and staff a clear understanding of the policy. A committee member said she was happy to see such clear and direct language in the new rules.

The new changes will be implemented at the start of the school year on September 1.

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