Enforcing No Hats Rule Causes Bigger Distraction

Staff

Recent reinforcement of the no hat policy creates a more extreme punishment for a policy that should not even be in place. Normal hats, hoodies and beanies do not distract from classroom activities.

The student handbook states that students must not wear apparel that creates a distraction. Only abnormal hats like sombreros, top-hats and jester hats (especially with little jingly bells) create any sort of distraction. Since most students would never wear hats like those, normal caps and beanies should be included in acceptable attire, while the other crazy hats should be excluded under section eight of the dress code, banning extreme articles of apparel.

Hats do not cause more distractions than any other article of clothing. They are common anywhere people go. The attention directed toward hats is only derived from the administrations persistence in enforcing the policy. If hats were allowed and not constantly highlighted people would not even notice them. Introduced as a sign of respect in the 60’s, the no-hat policy has become outdated and irrelevant since then. A simple baseball cap or beanie certainly isn’t more distracting than bright red spirit shirts, giant letter jackets or revealing clothes that fit within dress code.

Additionally, the inclusion of hoodies in the enforcement does not even follow the student handbook. In fact, hooded sweaters and jackets aren’t mentioned in the dress code at all. It’s understandable that the administration would worry that gang related attire, or worse: concealed weapons, could be hidden within the large pockets and spaces of a hoodie or jacket, but restricting the wear of the hood will do little to alleviate those concerns. Besides, hoods help keep our heads warm in a cold building.

Even without changing the policy, the new punishment does not fit the ‘crime’. Confiscating the hats in addition to a two-hour D-Hall is far too extreme for wearing clothes that don’t even cause problems in the first place. The district should change this policy and allow the wear of hats.