The purpose of Mountain West Montessori Academy’s dress code policy is to provide a safe and secure learning environment at the school where students can concentrate on their work without undue focus on external appearances. The dress code is intended to balance the benefits of school uniforms with the principle of individual choice. Some of these benefits include: reducing distractions, instilling a sense of community, leveling economic distinctions, and helping to identify those who do not belong on campus.
Dress Code Policy
The following comprises MWMA’s general dress policies. In general, students are expected to wear clothing which is clean, well-fitting, worn correctly, and free of tears and/or holes.
Pants must be in solid colors only, in the following colors: black, grey, brown, khaki, or navy blue. They may be flat or pleated front in chino, twill, khaki, or corduroy. Cargo pants (pants with outside pockets) are not allowed. No jeans of any color are allowed. Pants must be worn at the waistline and cover all undergarments. Both boys and girls may wear shorts that come to or below mid-thigh in any of the same solid colors. Girls may wear skirts, skorts, jumpers, or capris in any of the same solid colors but all must come to or below mid-thigh; further, tights, leggings, or inconspicuous shorts must be worn underneath skirts and jumpers. Tights and leggings may be any color, solid, print, or patterned. No style of bottoms may have characters, words, or logos. Socks may be worn in any color or pattern; however, socks and tights must be free of holes, pictures, or logos.
Shirts must be of a collared style (polo, oxford, blouse, turtleneck, or dress shirt) with long or short sleeves, and in one of any of the following SOLID colors: white, blue, yellow, red or purple. Shirts may not display characters, words, logos, or drawings with the exception of the MWMA school logo or name. White or grey t-shirts may be worn underneath the collared shirt, and shirts must long enough to be tucked in. All buttoned down shirts must remain buttoned even when wearing an undershirt. Students may wear a tie with oxford or dress shirt.
Sweaters or sweater vests, as well as cardigans and fleece vests may be worn in plain SOLID red or navy blue. No hoodies will be allowed at school. Winter parkas and coats that have an attached hood may be worn to school and placed in a locker. No clothing item may display characters, words, logos, or drawings with the exception of the MWMA school logo or name.
Shoes and Boots
Shoes and boots may not be open-toed, backless, character, sandals, lighted, heels or wedges over 1/2”, make sounds, or overly distracting. “Heelies” are not allowed for safety reasons. All shoes and boots must be worn with socks or tights. Shoes must be tied or fastened.
Snow boots must be changed into school-approved socks or socks and slippers while inside the building.
Inside Socks and Slippers
Because Montessori students often work on the floor, students will remove their outside shoes and wear socks or socks with slippers in the classroom to promote comfort, cleanliness, and a quiet classroom environment. Appropriate slippers include: croc slippers, slipper socks, or any slippers that are not open-toed, backless, character, sandals, lighted, or otherwise distracting. The slippers may stay at the school.
No hats or caps, including winter hats and baseball caps, may be worn inside the building.
Brown or black belts may be worn but cannot include logos, chains, or other distracting paraphernalia. Jewelry, make-up, and hair accessories may be worn as long as they are not a distraction or danger. Hair must not obstruct student vision. Sunglasses may not be worn in the building. Ear gauges, spike jewelry, and visible tattoos (temporary or permanent) are not permitted.
For field trips, outings, or presentations, the Executive Director may require a school-wide shirt color to help identify our students and enhance school spirit. Information regarding this policy will be presented to families prior to school starting each year.
School Spirit Shirts
Students may choose to purchase “school spirit shirts” that may be worn in addition to the other allowable shirts.
Free Dress Day Standards
On free dress days, students are still expected to dress in a manner that positively impacts the learning environment. Clothing must be tasteful and not compromise safety standards for our students. The following are not permitted: baggy or saggy pants, tank tops, shorts or skirts higher than mid-thigh, bare feet, open toe or high-heeled (over 1/2”) shoes, and clothing that displays obscene, vulgar, lewd, or sexually explicit words, messages, or pictures. Clothing must not expose midriffs, buttocks, or undergarments. No clothing assumed as gang-related is allowed.
Middle School Privilege
Students in grades 7 through 9 may choose to participate, through Student Council or other means, in parliamentary procedure to formulate recommendations about the following dress code additions for each new school year:
The wearing of blue jeans (that are free from holes, rips, fraying, logos, & distractions)
Additional solid color(s) for middle school shirts
Based upon these procedures each year, a student committee may present student recommendations to the school board. The school board and administration will decide whether to allow these additional dress codes privileges for Middle School students only. These decisions will be made on a yearly basis, and will not automatically carry over to the next year.
The Middle School students petitioned the board in the spring of 2017 to add gray, black and white sweater and cardigan colors to the dress code. This petition was approved for the remainder or the 2016-2017 school year and the 2017-2018 school year. After this time, students would need to petition the board to maintain the changes.
Administration Has Discretion
This policy is intended to create a framework to meet the purpose as stated at the beginning of this policy. As styles change, or if questions arise, the Executive Director, as the Governing Boards’ designee, has the authority to determine whether or not a student’s dress is in keeping with this policy.