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Flagler School Board Adopts Uniforms on 3-2 Vote But Only Vaguely Defines What It Means

| January 17, 2012

They didn't get their way this time. (FlaglerLive)

Maybe Flagler County has school-uniform fatigue. Maybe people have other things to worry about even as they may have wished the Flagler County School Board did, too. Regardless, there was no mass turnout this evening as the board promised to take an up-or-down vote on the matter. It was not 2007, when crowds filled the board room and public anger roiled to such a pitch that it forced the board to reverse course and abandon its then-plan to institute uniforms.

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Facing a board room less than half full Tuesday evening, and after a little more than a dozen people spoke, the school board voted 3-2 to adopt what it called uniforms in all traditional public schools (kindergarten through 12th grade) beginning in August 2012. But the word “uniform” is being misapplied. What the board voted on was, in so far as its supporters have spoken about it, a more stringent dress code than it has in place now, the signal difference being the requirement that all students wear a collared shirt.

But there were no district documents defining what those uniforms would be one way or the other. Board Member Colleen Conklin spoke of her visit to the Osceola school district last week as the model. There, students can wear jeans, many colors as long as they wore collared shirts, and had no restrictions on shoes, belts and many other accessories.

The board member most responsible for this year’s uniform initiative is John Fischer, who spoke of this as “the right time” for uniforms as he dismissed the notion that people could not afford uniforms, since the clothes could be bought at any discount store. Remarkably, Fischer downplayed the high number of Flagler County students on free and reduced lunch–usually an indicator of need–saying that for many in that category, it’s not “poverty level” need. He rejected one by one the arguments made against uniforms. It seems like there’s a lot of people don’t want uniforms, but I haven’t heard reasons as to why they’re bad,” he said. “I believe it’s something that’s good for our community.”

“I’ve been on the fence in regard to the cost,” Conklin said. That’s no longer her concern. She went so far as calling a uniform policy “a favor” to those who have less money, because it would reduce the amount of clothes they’d have to buy. She also believes that uniforms do change attitudes and results in schools, if only by decreasing “negative student behavior” (terms left, like so much else in this debate, undefined and unencumbered by evidence). “You look at all this research, it’s hard to deny that it makes a positive impact in the schools,” Conklin said.

Sue Dickinson, who chairs the board, took exception to recurring criticism that the board was ignoring its job before calling for the vote at 7:30 p.m.: Fischer, Conklin and Dickinson voted in favor. Dance and Tucker voted against.

Board member Trevor Tucker had “one big hang-up with this”: the fact that the school district could not spend tax-dollars to buy uniforms for students in need. Board member Colleen Conklin said the Osceola school district had secured a federal grant to make just such aid possible. She was only half-right: the federal grant was small, and it was designed to help homeless children, not children who needed uniforms, though the two needs could intersect. Conklin said donations and businesses could pick up where tax dollars would not. Tucker worried that those donation dollars would be diverted from other needs.

“We haven’t defined what a uniform is, we have a lot of ideas up here as to what a uniform is,” board member Andy Dance said. Without that, “I’m not at liberty to support this. There’s too many questions that still have to be answered.” He added: “We still have a ton of important issue before us that this is somewhat trivializing.” Not least, he said, Tucker’s point has to be made: Flagler County has parents who “can’t afford a roof over their head, can’t afford a brand new set of clothes.” He summed it up as “the wrong time” to be having the debate on the issue, and wished the same emotions and investments were directed into the schools, in matters of actual student achievement. “If we did that, we’d put St. Johns County to shame,” he said, a reference to the district to the north that always exceeds Flagler in achievement–and has no uniform policy.

There were no new revelations or ideas during the public-comment portion on the topic.

Those opposing uniforms spoke of the repression of individualism, of choice, of freedom, they spoke of the need to encourage expression and creativity rather than control, and even of competition: “If you pass this there will not be another school in the county that offers free dress,” the man said. “You’re eliminating competition.” He was referring to the three charter schools and existing parochial schools where uniforms are a requirement. A woman who spoke soon afterward noted how one of those charter schools, Heritage Academy, has a uniform requirement, but was being shuttered by the school board this very evening (the board was to vote on accepting the superintendent’s recommendation to close the school, because it’s been failing academically, according to state standards.)

Opponents of uniforms frequently appealed to the board to enforce the existing dress code rather than impose a more stringent one. Speakers compared uniforms to communism, Castro’s and Hugo Chavez’s regimes. Many of those who spoke were team-tagging parents and children. Katie Hansen, the local teachers union president, asked the board: is the existing dress code being enforced uniformly? Is there money to provide assistance to those who may need I to buy uniforms? Is there a correlation between uniforms and student achievement? The questions were mostly rhetorical, but answering No to each was implied.

The proponents of uniforms spoke of the need for some uniformity in schools to reduce distraction, judging, eternal decision-making in the morning, to improve “respect” and possibly achievement, though even proponents conceded that there is no proven correlation between uniforms and achievement. “Students learn more, pay attention more in class,” one young student—in uniform—said. “All the kids are a lot more respectful, and everybody is nicer.” Cornelia Manfre, the parent of two particularly achieving graduates of Flagler Palm Coast High School, reminded the board of the 2007 reversal and urged members, favoring uniforms: “Let’s get it done, make a decision, no rescission.”

She got her wish.

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91 Responses for “Flagler School Board Adopts Uniforms on 3-2 Vote But Only Vaguely Defines What It Means”

  1. Anonymous says:

    PROTEST PROTEST PROTEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11

    • Doug Chozianin says:

      I chuckle at the uproar about school uniforms especially when compared against the relative silence about Flagler Schools lousy reading, math and science scores.

      Let’s PROTEST, PROTEST, PROTEST against the Flagler Schools Board employing incompetent teachers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Cassandra says:

        Yes, good idea. Let’s blame all the teachers. Let’s not take any other factors into account such as parent support, income levels, or any demographics for that matter. You are right, the ONLY reason a student would score low on a SINGLE test in 4th grade must be all the teacher’s fault.

      • Mike says:

        Or perhaps we can protest your fake and questionable Haitian fund instead?

  2. Amita Lahiri via Facebook says:

    It will be a positive change less emphasis on clothing and more on school!

  3. Yellowstone says:

    This school board is leaving themselves wide open for a multiple series of lawsuits.

    I can hear it now, “What? Your telling me you sent my kid home ’cause his shirt ain’t tucked in? You folks better begin figuring out who pays the school taxes around here. By the way, see ya in court!’

    Good luck taxpayers – guess going to pay that bill too . . .?

    • Anonymous says:

      If the parents, or guardians, of the students spent a little more time and effort on ensuring that their kids were properly and appropriately dressed for school each morning, this never would have been an issue.

      Instead of complaining about the actions taken by the school board and school administrators, why don’t some of you try helping them by volunteering at a school or being more pro-active when it comes to your child’s education.

      • Kamamani says:

        You have been misled, Anonymous. Only about 10% of students in high school and jr. high violate the dress code, and the percentage in elementary school is far less. So stop putting down the 90%+ of parents that DO spend enough time making sure our kids are dressed properly.

        I am totally AGAINST uniforms. Why should you pass a policy to correct the misbehavior of less than 10% of the students? It makes absolutely NO SENSE!

        And the kids that are wearing their pants too low and their skirts too shirt are still gonna wear their pants too low and their skirts too short, they will just be khaki pants and skirts.

        Uniforms will not solve one single issue. This policy will only create hardships for the families of Flagler County.

        This is an election year people!!! Let’s vote out the board members that pass policies that we don’t like!!!! We can show them at the polls that we are unhappy with their leadership, or lack thereof.

        • hey now... says:

          Dress code will solve plenty of issues. Have you been in a high school or JR high lately? Take a walk, you might surprise yourself on what you THINK you know. I don’t know the exact percentage but i can promise you it is A LOT higher than 10%

      • Robert says:

        Wake Up its ok when you don’t care.Wait untill they come after you. Just like when they raised insurance rates for smokers. Most people were ok with it. Then they did it to over weight people, still people were ok with it. They keep going and will come for you soon. Every time we are forced to do something we lose freedom. If everyone would just take a little time to think about why we have government, and realize its only for protection, and protection alone. That what our forefathers even said.

  4. Margaret Federle Wallace Carter via Facebook says:


  5. says:

    After all the time and effort that they have already devoted to this (non) issue what kind of a decision is this? It seems that they really don’t want to vote yes to real uniforms but they really don’t know how to say no…yet this decision says it all….lets move on to real issues for a change!

  6. Dennis Hogan says:

    Who is going to pay for the extra clothes you will have to buy for this ?

    • Anonymous says:

      Really they say it will cost me less. BS Now I have to buy regular clothes then uniforms because my kid is not going to wear uniforms when she gets home. Super a double clothes bill.

    • not telling my name....... says:

      I AGREE 100% with this. Kids dont want to wear uniforms and now us parents will need to buy EXTRA clothes for our kids. School clothes plus everyday clothes so it will end up costing parents MORE money.

  7. Kim says:

    The emphasis doesn’t need to be on the clothes the kids are wearing. It needs to be on their education! I don’t care one way or another if they have to wear uniforms or not, and by the way, (I am one of those parents that can barely puit a roof over my familys head!) A childs education, and their values that have been instilled at home are what is most important in their lives. If they have good values, they will know how to carry themselves thru life and a uniform isn’t going to change that!!

  8. Justin says:

    I can’t wait for the first day of school next year, It;s going to be a zoo!!!!! :)

  9. MHSStudent says:

    I believe that Flagler County does not need “Uniforms”. School administration needs to enforce what dress code is already in place. The reason that there are so many “violations” is because there has been lack of follow-through. If no one tells you its wrong (or if they dont enforce it) what is going to stop you? Today’s society has poor character; meaning that if no one catches you, it is ok.

    I feel if school admins. “crack down” on the dress code already in place then the matter of school uniforms (whatever they may be) is reduntandt.

    I am not against school uniforms. I follow the rules first, then ask questions later.

    I will not rebel and I hope my fellow classmates will join me.

  10. TTeleven says:

    I guess the Flagler Co. school board likes being sued.

  11. says:

    congratualtions school board, now you justified your 30,000 plus salary ,god only knows what else you are getting. do the job for nothing like school board members in NY and NJ, show your real dedication.

  12. Gina Hall says:

    What doesn’t make sense to me is that these uniforms are for “Improving attitudes and achievement levels”
    Now, how many years have we been a A+ school district? How many? And now you want to change up our whole act to please you guys.
    You’re not pleasing parents or students, no you’re pleasing yourselves. You’re getting what you guys want to make everyone who doesn’t have money suffer. Bullying isn’t leaving, so stop trying to make it leave.

  13. OKES Mom says:

    I’m a single mother with a child in OKES. I’m currently on the free lunch program as I lost my job and have been unable to find full time employment. I currently work less than 30 hours a week. I am hoping there is going to be some sort of financial support for parents currently on the food program to help us afford these “uniforms”.
    If the disctrict can’t enforce the current dress code already in place, how in the world do they expect to be able to rein in a unifrom policy???

  14. another voice says:

    This is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of–they are creating a problem where none existed, just so they can get people all riled up and divided.

    Thing is–because they’ve only vaguely defined “uniforms”, nothing is going to change here, when all the fuss dies down.They will still have behavioral problems and they will still need to discipline children for having them. They will not enforce this joke of a “policy” , how can they if there’s no clear picture of what a “uniform” is?

    We just got punk’d. Again. Time to put REAL educators in charge of schools instead of these petty little bureaucrats who administer to their little fifedoms as if it belonged to them and not to the students and families who are supported by everyone’s taxes.

  15. Alyssa Mikhail says:


  16. Outsider says:

    It’s interesting that those who claim uniforms will cost the district and parents money can’t wait to cost the school system money on trivial lawsuits. Cry babies….

  17. Nancy N says:

    My kid won’t be wearing a uniform. Period. I have serious philosophical objections to them, cannot afford to buy my kid a whole new wardrobe next fall, and have better things to do than worry about what color shirt my kid is wearing to school. Not to mention that my daughter is autistic and has issues with clothing and may not adjust well to a uniform.

    I’m tired of the school district telling me how to raise my kid. I’m going to do what I always do when they try to overreach their boundaries and infringe my rights as a parent to decide what is best for my child – ignore them.

  18. Nancy N says:

    Oh and…I don’t care what else they do between now and their next run for election…I will make sure to go to the polls to vote against every single one of those 3 board members who voted for this ridiculous idea. Not just because I oppose what they did, but because their stated reasons for doing it don’t even make sense.

    I’m particularly troubled by the disconnect from reality of Mr. Fischer’s statement that those on free and reduced lunches don’t have “poverty level” need. Actually, Mr Fischer, that is the very definition of being in that program! They aren’t giving that program to people living in million dollar homes in the Hammock!

    And Mr. Tucker and Mr. Dance….thanks for exercising some sense where the other board members were sadly lacking. You have my vote!

    • areyoukidding? says:

      What you don’t realize is that some of those people living in those “million dollar homes in the Hammock” have lost their jobs and are facing foreclosure on their home (something they probably worked very hard for). Shame you on for assuming the size and location of a home determines your eligibility for need. Those homes could be filled with other family members that may have lost their own home and are forced to share a home now meaning there could be 8-12 (an est figure) people living in one house on one person’s income. What amazes me is that the there are so many single parent families out there who are just above the line of what is considered “poverty-level” that they are denied help from every government source including the food program but there are people out there (known personally) who lie, cheat, and do nothing but collect benefits among other not so legal income earning activites while the ones who really need it suffer badly. This new policy only makes it worse.

  19. Michael Stavris via Facebook says:

    Normal for Flagler county screw everything up

  20. Tired HS Teacher says:

    If the School Board watched silently as students fled to charter schools at the district’s unwise decision to make dismissal earlier for middle school students (taking their state FUNDING with them to the charter school) watch how high school students (particularly seniors) flock en masse to dual enrollment, where they can wear what they want, not have to worry about whether their cell phones or turned on and off, and not have to worry about the school hours and academic schedule changing yearly. Dozens of my students (mainly juniors as seniors( have pledged tme that if they have to deal with uniform, they will just dual enroll at Daytona State to avoid implementation. I don’t blame them We want them to act like adults, but we don’t treat them like adults. There are just to unknowns in this policy. So typical of this Board to pass a policy before thinking through how it will work, and dumping requirements and policies on already overburdened schools to sort it all out.

    I used to teach in another district that implemented uniforms: the upshot? Studies a few years later revealed the only beneficiaries were the School Board members who voted for it, all of whom had ties to businesses ,or who had relatives, who sold uniforms to the thousands of kids who wore them and owned uniforms shops or uniform mail order businesses. Watch who will end up having their hand in the pot for a piece of the proverbial pie….. the members who voted for this should have had to disclose what their financial interest is in this, and promise that they won’t personally benefit from this, as school board members in other districts have when such policies like this were implemented. Did they look into this during their junked to Osceola?

  21. OKES Mom says:

    Wonder what sort of UNIFORM the staff will be wearing. I sure hope they included them in their decision as UNIFORMS should be required for the entire school staff, board members included.

    • LLRV says:

      What did the teacher do that they should wear uniforms? What about parents, should they have to wear them? I guess OKES parent does know realize that teachers did not create this.

  22. Badge says:

    Heil Flagler Schools……Its 1939 all over again. Lets all dress like little nazi’s and march to school.

  23. Happy Happy says:

    I am so happy that the board voted for uniforms. I agree about the cry babies. Accept it. It is done.

  24. What about the teachers dressing so they gain respect? Alot of them look like they want to be the kids friend, not be a authority figure, mostly at the high schools. THey should be dressing up, not like every day is casual friday.

  25. Uniform kinda guy! says:

    Now let’s see the teachers dress appropriately. What’s good for the students is good for the teachers! Let them set the example.

  26. Kamamani says:

    This is just ONE MORE of these three members of the school board COMPLETELY IGNORING the parents of Flagler County by promoting their own agenda.

    This is not the first time, and will certainly not be the last time that they have listened to that mythical “silent majority” to pass a policy that the vocal majority have vehemently opposed.

    Thank you Andy Dance and Trevor Tucker for listening to us. Let’s show our disdain for the other three at the polls this year!!!

  27. DP says:

    Fischer, Conklin and Dickinson your time on the board is up, time to vote you out for another stupid policy, unfunded mandate vote. Government needs to stay out of our lives and personal reasonability’s, that’s what I as parent is responsible for. But apparently not. Uniforms or whatever you want to call them is not needed. Enforce what you have. For all those who wanted them, and encouraged unfunded mandates congratulations, as you just gave the board a blank check. My child will not be wearing anything called a uniform in a Tax payer provided school system, and what they currently wear now is constitutionally correct and proper.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Hello, Isn’t this the year of Occupy Wall Street, lets make a Occupy No Uniform!!!!

  29. Hell NO says:

    Where was the survey that was supposed to be sent out to parents? Who the hell does the school board think they are? Flagler county is a real cesspool!

  30. tulip says:

    So the kids will have to wear a collared shirt and decent pants or jeans—-clothes that can be bought ANYWHERE–what’s the big deal?

    • Anonymous says:

      parents find the money for kids new clothes every year,the parents or kids who are complaining they are broke are the ones that are usually wearing gold jewelery gold teeth driving new cars with stereo blasting out of sub woofers and most likely the parents have their cigs and beer and just want to complain cuz they living off the gov.and have nothing better to do..believe me ive seen this go on for years here been living here since 1976 i own my home pay school taxes and home school my kids and im not complaining about how my tax money is used..just but the damn uniforms and stop complaining!

      • Nancy N says:

        Excuse me? Stereotype much? None of what you described applies to me. I own my home and pay school taxes too….and value my civil liberties and rights as a parent. I will not let some outside group of school administrators tell me how to raise my kid or how to spend my money. I can’t afford uniforms but I shouldn’t have to justify to you or anyone else how I spend my money or go groveling to some charity drive to clothe my kid when she already has perfectly good non-uniform clothes to wear to school.

  31. John Boy says:

    I guess that Fischer feels if his wife will be wearing a uniforn, you kids should do the same.

  32. Anonymous says:

    I’ll see you in court lol

  33. roco says:

    Good move on this subject.. Now we can tell the difference between the teachers and students. The students will be the better dressed ones.

  34. Homeschool 4 Me says:

    KUDOs to School Board members, Mr Fischer, Mrs, Dickinson & Ms Conklin for choosing this battle to end your run on the School Board. Allow me to thank you in advance for your service. You’ll be now known as the fashionista’s of Flagler County and unemployed next election, I hope.

    While you can’t even agree on what a uniform is (Oh and good luck enforcing that in August) didn’t a couple of Flagler schools receive lower grades this year due to graduation rates?
    Aren’t scores trending lower?
    Isn’t an “F” charter school closing? ……. Will uniforms address those concerns?

    Teachers have enough to worry about in the classroom and you 3 are making them the fashion police. Is that the positive imact in the classroom you all were looking for?

  35. Judy V says:

    I’m glad my children are grown and we don’t have to deal with this. Good luck to those who will fight the good fight. And to those who “won” – if you wanted to send your kids to school in collared shirts and jeans every day, why didn’t you? Why force it on everyone?

    I feel like my tax dollars are being wasted on a formulating a completely unnecessary policy – it’s redundant. Enforce what you have. Mr. Fischer you are so out of touch, it’s ridiculous. Ms. Conklin and Ms. Dickinson, I am so disappointed in both of you.

    Let’s all please remember this debacle at election time.

  36. JUST WONDERING says:

    Well you got your way…enjoy your remaining time on the school board because it is about to have run it’s course.
    In all practical purposes uniforms is not a bad idea, but don’t push it off as the end all to all the problems the
    school system has, not even close. The biggest problem is the school board we elected but fails to listen to
    the majority. You are not above the masses in Flagler County in fact I think you are a very poor representation of the county. Not the pillers I want children to look up to at all.
    I expect to see every board member wearing uniforms to every function they represent as Flagler County School Board Members. Good for the Goose Good for the Gander!
    Let’s see how the gang numbers decrease because they are dressed differently, by the way you can get those numbers from the Flagler County Sheriffs Office. They deal with the gangs day and night.
    This is just a farce with no real justification. Private schools open your doors, all is welcome.

  37. I'm Not Saying...I'm Just Saying says:

    I’ll try to make this as brief as possible. I listened to last night’s meeting online from work, as I could not make it over to the GSB.

    When the board went around for comments, Fischer sounded like he was 100 percent OBSESSED with this. Literally, he came across as a man who cared about nothing else other than having his pet project get pushed through. To bring up the free lunches and say people ‘are making enough’ was a complete and utter insult to those on the program who truly need it.

    As for Ms. Conklin, I enjoyed her seemingly snarky comment toward Trevor- ‘I don’t know about YOUR visit, but on mine…’ and then proceeded to just suggest FCS apply for federal money to supplement the uniform costs. Just a thought, but had the board not passed this ludicrous idea in the first place, THEY WOULDN’T NEED A FEDERAL GRANT.

    I urge all local companies to hold back corporate donations that are feeding into Mr. Fischer and Ms. Dickinson’s pet project. It’s time to show this board and all our elected officials that their decisions have true consequences that can’t be fixed by asking for corporate and governmental handouts.

    • Nancy N says:

      That’s a fabulous suggestion…I would take it a step further and suggest that those opposed to the implementation of uniforms should pledge to not spend their clothing dollars at any retailer that donates to support uniforms.

      It’s a waste of money and I won’t support any retailer that supports it. Personally, I’m starting with boycotting Beall’s for their role in putting on the farce of a fashion show that was presented as “informational” at the supposed “town hall meeting” that was really nothing than a sales pitch for uniforms and all the money that they would make for Beall’s.

      Maybe if they can’t get any retailers to waste their money on it the board will be forced to rethink this idiocy.

  38. Occupy says:

    John boy, that was a really funny comment, but in all humor aside, a life was lost and that fact that mr Fisher wife left the seen was even more horrable,so change mrs Fisher with a crime and maybe her husbin will see how uniforms do not work.

    • Karen Riley says:

      I feel that I have to comment on the uniform vote since I feel so passionate about the subject.
      I understand the thoughts behind having students “uniform” and that the heroes in our society, such as the military, fire fighters, sheriffs, athletic teams, doctors and nurses, etc all wear uniforms. HOWEVER these individuals CHOOSE to wear uniforms and they are compensated for the jobs that they do.
      MY understanding is that every child in this country is entitled to a public school education. What I don’t understand is how 3 people can dictate what my children wear ( even though they don’t know what it is going to
      be). An education is something our children are entitled to no matter what they wear.
      In this country we have been fighting for our FREEDOM for well over 200 years. How can a government agency tell us what we are to wear?
      I can not and do not believe we are raising a generation of hoodlums. I am involved in PTO and attend SAC meetings at the middle school.. I have asked on many occasions, and have sat in on many meetings discussing bullying, gangs, and school violence. I have gone as far as to meet with the youth officer and discuss these issues.
      I have been assured by principals, assistant principals , and youth officers that the discipline problems are minimal.
      I have spent time volunteering in the elementary schools and what I see are beautiful clean buildings and happy children.
      If there are no real “problems”(as I have been assured) then why is the school board going so far as to dictate what students should wear? To supposedly keep our children from bullying, bad behavior , violence and crime?
      In my opinion all this is doing is making the school district look bad and focusing on a small minority that may be causing problems.
      I raised a son in New York who is now 27. We did not have a uniform policy. The students wore hats, bandanas, baggy skater pants and over sized shirts back in those days. My son’s class of 2002 had 0% drop out rate and 98% of the class went on to college. Of that graduating class of slightly more than 100 students they were offered 3 MILLION $ in scholarships. My son was offered 2 scholarships $35,000 for academics and lacrosse and $40,000 for leadership.
      Now I have 1 child in middle school and 1 child in elementary school. I let them wear what they want. They both have scored 5s on the FCAT.
      The difference between NY and here is the parents, teachers and administrators in NY respected the children. There were high expectations and the children were taught to think for themselves.
      Ever since I moved here I have felt that the children are treated as problematic and need to be controlled.
      We should be putting our children on a pedestal and treating them like the precious treasures they are.
      I have a Masters Degree and have worked for over 30 years. I have raised 1 child successfully and my 2 younger children are doing well. I am quite offended that the school board feels they can infringe on my parenting skills by telling me what my children can wear.
      I will do everything in my power to prevent them from wearing a
      In Flagler County we should be focusing on the positive things the district is doing and portray ourselves as such.

  39. Fpc Teacher says:

    I am currently a teacher at Fpc for the last five years, and I have been In this county for thirteen years and as a teacher in of of the two high school, and let me just say this every who wants uniforms apparently does not know what century we are in. If I can’t get my students to wear there Id’s what makes you think that they will a uniform, that most of us at Fpc do not want?

  40. Helene says:

    To those who insist this uniform policy will mean the teachers won’t have to say “pull your pants up” anymore – how about a reality check!! Really?! You are just kidding yourselves. Let me put this simply for you: the student who wears his pants low around his upper thighs with underwear showing on top CAN STILL DO THIS WITH A DAMM UNIFORM!! Whether they wear jeans, khakis, or a fricken tuxedo – they can still make their own fashion statement. If the schools can’t get these students to follow the dress code already in place – how will they get them to follow this ridiculous “uniform” code.
    It will be the same as it is now: those who like to wear “collared” shirts will and those who don’t, won’t. The number of students flagged for not following dress code will just be even higher.

    What a waste of time and taxpayer money. The time would have been better spent trying to figure out how to get the lost time back that you cut this year!

  41. Give it a rest says:

    How about some of the PARENTS put a foot up the backside of these sagging baggy wearin’ kids!! If it weren’t for all that kind of crap and girls falling out of their tops this wouldn’t even be an issue. Get over it! Put the uniform on and GO TO SCHOOL!

  42. Cherl says:

    I will not send any one of my 3 children to school in any sort of uniform. I do not agree with a 3 person decision invloving an entire County. Many choice words to all 3 of them, I can’t afford a 2nd wardrobe, nor will I try to purchase a single item for this rediculous vote. I will end of getting a call for all 3 of my kids 5 days a week to bring a change of clothes which I will not do, then I will have to leave work 5 days a week, then i will get fired, then I will go on unemployment, then my kids will live in worse conditions they are already in, grades will slip, they will drop out of school and flip burgers, GOOD PLAN! I am UTTERLY disgusted with the 3 people that promoted their votes in this direction. Just because you have cash and time to THROW AWAY doesn’t mean the rest of this community does. THINK! before you make decisions for OUR children.

  43. Sierra says:

    School Uniforms. The 2 word kids have a great dislike for. I am a girl in elemetary school about to go into middle school. School uniforms are horrible. If the school board gives us the right to wear jeans and accessories and belts and shoes, don’t you think they should just let us wear shirts too? Does it really make a difference if we wear a polo shirt or not? I mean we’ve been an A district for like 4 years. Why change now? If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. It will not stop bullying it will not help us learn so why bother.

  44. w.ryan says:

    In the guise of doing something? The big deal is although the parents say no the school board hold up a front on doing a job when actually wasting time and money for a none important topic!!!

  45. FPC teacher says:

    I don’t really care what the uniform will be, but I hope they will make a decision on what to do with those who show up without it. I will teach them wearing anything if my pay depends on how they score on end of the year exams. If they take those kids and put them in detention to sit and do nothing then the uniform will become a larger problem for ALL of us because they will disrupt our ability to teach. Currently the dress code is inconsistently enforced primarily because the parent will fight the school on the rules regarding dress code. The same kids come inappropriately dressed often, they have parents that set the example, I actually saw a parent in the office wearing footy pajamas last week! I like the idea of uniforms but I wonder what it will be like in realitiy, We have difficulty with expectations that involve parents especially in high school.

  46. Kamamani says:

    I have a few questions….What will happen if my child shows up at school with a non collared shirt on? Will they be sent home, or made to sit in the office until I can get there to get her? Why don’t we just do that to the kids that don’t follow the dress code now? Is it at all reasonable that a child can currently go to school in a tank top and nothing is done about it (this is the complaint of uniform supporters,) but, with the new uniform policy, a child that is not in a collared shirt, who otherwise has always followed the dress code, and by all rational standards is dressed appropriately, will be punished? How is enforcing the uniforms going to be better or easier than enforcing the current dress code? How is holding the 90%+ of students who follow the current rules to a dress code that is more stringent going to make it easier to control the 10% of students that don’t follow the rules? Doesn’t it stand to reason that implementing a more stringent dress code will only INCREASE the number of incidents of students being in violation of the code? I would truly like a response to these questions from one or all of the three board members that voted to implement uniforms. I would really like to know how they think a uniform policy is going to solve any of the problems they say it will solve.

  47. Flagler Citizen says:

    If parents would take the time to make sure their children weren’t wearing shirts with their breasts hanging out, or boys that had on pants that fit them we wouldn’t have this problem. All the people are whining, it’s a collared shirt, any collared shirts. They are extremely cheap, and if you feel the need to post about your poverty on here then go to the goodwill. Simple solutions are everywhere, people just need something to bitch at.

  48. IML8 says:

    I for one am THRILLED about the approval of school uniforms. My children are also very pleased. They have attended a school in the past with a uniform and have been at WES for the last 3 years. They perfer waking up in the morning and just putting on a uniform… no worries about what they are going to wear. Reading the replies to this article I now have a better understanding why our schools have the problems they do. I can not believe how many show no respect for others and would actually encourage their child not to follow the new uniform policy.

    • Jordyn says:

      Nothing is stopping your children from wearing a collared shirt now – it’s already allowed under the dress code. No need for a uniform policy.

      My son is one of a group in his school that wear a suit to school once a week – just because they like dressing up and looking nice. No uniform policy needed for that either.

  49. SSDD says:

    I am glad they passed the uniform policy, it really didn’t matter to me either way. Now if all the whining and bitching people on here that are so against it would of shown up at the meeting last night and voiced their opinions, I would say that you have a right to comment. If you didn’t, well then your voice wasn’t heard and you really don’t have a leg to stand on. You have the right to vote. If you didn’t exercise that right, well then again, no leg to stand on except your bitching. Maybe things like this will get the voters out for elections and the right people will get in the elected positions. Now as for that, the board members work for the public as elected officials and I really don’t think they listened to the public. I’m sure we probably paid for the trip to Osceola County as well… As for Mr. Fischer, he should make a public apology for his comment that was WAY out of line. It needs to be seen by everyone in this county. I don’t have him figured out. So everyone keeps talking about having to buy 2 sets of clothes now for the next school year. Why??? Who says you have to do that? Do you buy your kids new clothes to go out and play in every year? Probably not… So buy the uniforms for school and let them wear the clothes they have now for outside. Then when Christmas and Birthdays come around, buy them some clothes… Seems like uniforms is saving money, not costing double… Just Saying

    • w.ryan says:

      SSDD-You haven’t noticed the effort spent by so many parents to say “NO” to the uniforms? Where have you been? I stopped attending two meetings ago understanding that everyone’s voices were falling on deaf ears. Our board isn’t listening!!! They have gone rogue!

  50. Justin says:

    This is going to be like duval county, they passed uniforms but it only lasted 2 weeks, everyone who brought them lost a lot of money because nobody would wear them.

  51. Anonymous says:

    Last I herd this is America and there is a thing that you people who are for it say, that the kids should just stut up and wear it it’s called protest,and their is going to be a big one.

  52. local consumer says:

    maybe this wouldnt be an issue if kids didnt walk around the halls-with theyre pants falling down while grabbing the crotch of the pants…..

    kids today are sad sights for sore eyes when it comes to how they dress….

  53. Give it a rest says:

    I bet the Board isn’t going to over turn this decision and if YOU decide to keep your kids home then keep them home. If THEY decide to stay home then stay home – maybe then everyone can focus on their school work and not all this drama over clothes. Home school them! It’s all about how we react to situations that make a difference. The parents getting their kids all riled up should be ashamed of themselves. Maybe if we had parents who made their kids go to school dressed correctly then none of this would be an issue!!

  54. Justin says:

    Everyone lets get this stright, kids with still sag there pants uniforms or no uniforms.

  55. Devrie says:

    To Pierre or anyone who’s interested in the research:

    I wonder if there is a correlation between job creation (in terms of happy retailers) and school uniforms. Could there be an underlying financial gain or benefit to the county by making this happen?

    If students have poor social skills (in terms of what they wear), the uniform policy is the least of the ways to address that problem. There’s an underlying problem with the low test scores, and I’m hard pressed to believe that focusing on clothing will solve the problem.

    • Nancy N says:

      Why do you think Beall’s was tripping over themselves at that one so-called town hall meeting to put on that big fashion show and sell uniforms to the parents of the district? No matter how much that was sold as “informational”, they weren’t there out of the kindness of their hearts. They were there putting out that effort because they stand to make money – lots of it – from this initiative.

      They last time they tried this, one of the things that the school board members kept trying to use to sell it to the parents was that the local Chamber of Commerce had endorsed it and was on board with it. Like I was supposed to care what the local business community thought about an education policy issue?

      So yes, I’d say based on the active role that businesses in this community have taken trying to get this policy put into effect for quite some time…they obviously stand to make a lot of money. Which kind of puts the lie to the uniform proponents’ argument about uniforms being cheaper for families.

  56. palmcoaster says:

    Enforce the existing dress code and forget the uniforms. Now everyone knows who has to go from the school board? Then remember to vote on next election as only 5% of the residents go to the polls in this county or cities.This is what you get when you do not exercise your right to vote. Kids tell your parents to VOTE.

  57. Don says:

    I’m sorry but you cannot force these 11th and 12th graders to wear this is not going to work

  58. Justaperson says:

    For Pete’s sake people it’s just a collared shirt. You act like they’re being forced to wear a star trek suit. Give me a break!!

    For those of you encouraging your children to break the rules and not follow the uniform policy, shame on you! What are you teaching your kids?! There are ways for standing up for what you believe in without being disrespectful and outright rebellious against policies. There are plenty of things I don’t necessarily agree with but I don’t completely throw my hands up and disregard policies. The FCAT is completely ridiculous, no child left behind is a complete disservice to our children but instead you blame the school board for focusing on the very thing you’re outraged about. What have YOU done? Are you out there fighting the policies that are doing our children a disservice? No you’re too busy focusing on whether little Johnny has to wear a collared shirt to school.

    Get a grip!

    • Nancy N says:

      “It’s just a collared shirt.” We don’t know that yet. The uniform hasn’t been defined yet. And even if that is what it is, it is my job to dress my kid…not the school board. Constitutional law says that the government has to have a COMPELLING interest to interfere in my parental rights to that degree…and their inability or unwillingness to enforce the current school dress code is not a compelling interest by legal standards.

      “instead you blame the school board for focusing on the very thing you are outraged about”. I don’t remember ever expressing outrage about dress code issues. My daughter is in elementary school and it’s simply not an issue there that I’ve seen. In fact, I’ve (along with many other parents and several board members) been saying since this uniform thing was brought up that there are far more important things for the board to address and this is a waste of the board’s time.

      And it’s ridiculous of you to assume that those of us advocating on this subject haven’t also tried to make our voices heard on other education-related topics as well. Maybe some haven’t…but some of us regularly advocate for our kids on many topics related to education, healthcare, and other issues both with the school district and state and federal government. Many of us are involved in the political process in capacities such as small business owners as well. Just because our voices are being heard extra loudly on this topic because we thought we might actually have a chance on this one to alter the outcome doesn’t mean we aren’t also doing other things as well.

    • w.ryan says:

      If everyone was listening and reading correctly the word from the masses of parents and kids were “We don’t want uniforms”!!! Despite a resounding “NO” to uniforms by the very parents that elected the school board they disregarded and kept it as a yes vote. If this is a Democracy then why would the school board keep this on the front burner? Voting “yes” to uniforms when their constituency says “No” …That is broking the rules. Least you forget the real Tea Party.

  59. Justin says:

    Justaperson, we are teaching our kids that this is America, and if you don’t like it then maybe your not one!

  60. Justaperson says:

    Nancy ive been around since this started the first time and I’ve never seen you as involved regarding other topics as you have this one. As for the rest, I’ll address it when I have time. I’m a little busy actually parenting my child.

    • Nancy N says:

      @justaperson – A lot of my advocating is done through direct contact with district officials and staff. You don’t have to show your face at every school board meeting to be involved – unless you want to run for office, that is.

      And get off your freaking high horse about “actually parenting my child”, trying to infer that I don’t. You have no idea what kind of parent I am, really don’t know anything about me, so stop making random personal attacks.

      If you fully understood those systems of government you are describing, you’d know that protest and civil disobedience can play an important role in making the people’s voice heard. I’m not teaching my child to blindly follow the leader – I’m teaching my child to think for herself and do what she can to affect change when she sees something that is unjust, no matter if it is “the rules” or not.

  61. w.ryan says:

    Parents have trusted all those officials that say they can make a difference in their child’s education but there have not been a substantive difference toward the positive. Constitutionally, children have the right to an education without constraints. Forcing parents to purchase uniforms for their children so that they can go to school violate this right. This is well worth the wrath. I wish that parents would be more focused on all happenings or future happening at our school board. Tasers in school was a classic example of parents not coming out to say no to having Tasers in schools. The information was not put forth to the parents and “yes” slipped through. If parents want their children to be drones to a system that’s prone to abuse then we will lose the America that we have worked hard to create. I’m sure we all are busy parenting our children so broaden your thinking.

    • justmom says:

      Stop whining, stop teaching your kids to disrespect officials by saying you will completely not follow the rules, and be an example. IF (as a previous posting mentioned) she was instructed to wear a star trek suit then she had better do it. Stop being your kids friends and be a parent! Take an active role in the education of your child, make sure they do the homework, listen to the teacher and eat breakfast. MY KIDS ARE MY RESPONSIBILITY AND THEY ARE IN SCHOOL TO LEARN, PERIOD. There is nothing I can not stand more then a parent who thinks they they are still 15. GROW UP.

  62. w.ryan says:

    The first thing an adult does is listen! we comprehend and don’t pass judgement. I’m sorry to say that if you can respect everyone’s opinion, you can get information and gain knowledge. Your statement “MY KIDS ARE MY RESPONSIBILITY AND THEY ARE IN SCHOOL TO LEARN, PERIOD.” is what these other parents are saying! Public education is a right! When conditions such as cost is put into the mix there is a problem. These officials are voted into office by a constituency. We say no-they do as we want! We trust they listen and if they don’t they suffer being voted out. After all, isn’t this a democracy?

  63. justmom says:

    My husband and I are the authority. Passing judgement? Yes, when someone says there kid does not have to follow school rules. I have no issue respecting the opinions of others. I have an issue with a parent demonstrating disregard for the rules and teaching the kid to follow. It will be pretty difficult for your child to learn when they become disrespectful and have no regard for the rules. I am aware of what sort of government the country is ran under (constitutional republic by the way, not democracy, the individuals have rights, it might actually be a better arguement for your side) but my home is not a democracy. The parents wanted uniforms, they took a poll. Also, the collared shirts for my little daughter’s size are about $6 her shirts for this year about $12, so they are cost effective. The statement about “gaining knowledge” however, is passing judgement and leaves me questioning what credentials you have to question my level of knowledge. I have plenty of (as my kids say) letters after my name and until my kids have some they will be under my form of government.

  64. u already know says:

    i dont care weather we have to wear uniforms or not people is just making a big deal out of nothing they acting like they never wore a collard shirt before well all i have to say weather uniforms or not i’m still going to stay fly

    -its me agin


    really uniforms…thats not gonna change anything , the fighting, the arguing and the learning is gonna stay the same, clothes don’t make difference its the students. there is no point for uniforms, just a big waste of time to argue about.. everything was fine the way it was;being a normal school. ..i wanted my senior year to amazing but these uniforms just made me mad plus ima girl who loves to wear dresses, and since i have to wear the collared shirts how will i ever wear a dress. I BEILEVE THAT SENIOR SHOULDN’T WEAR UNIFORMS AT LEAST MON. -WED. ONLY THURSDAY AND FRIDAY. IT’S SENIOR YEAR ITS SUPPOSED TO BE THE BEST YEAR OF YOUR SCHOOL CARRER THE YEAR EVERYONE WAITS FOR AND THESE UNIFORMS ARE JUST RUINING IT. I AM GOING TO LOVE THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL WHEN NO ONE COMES TO SCHOOL IN THEIR UNIFORM. THE SCHOOL BOARD IS GONA REGRET THIS AND MORE. . P.S. THE SCHOOL BOARD SUCKS AND I HATE THEIR NEW POLICY WISH SOOOO MUCH PASSION..THEY SHOULD BE WORRING ABOUT HELPING KIDS PASS THE STATE TESTS NOT ON WHAT THEY WEAR. LETS GET REAL!!!!!!

  66. JustMe says:

    Looks like my sons will be home-schooled. I’ll be damned if a public school system will mandate my child’s wardrobe, especially when they are not footing the bill! I refuse to purchase “regular” clothes AND now school uniforms in addition…as if purchasing clothes for four boys isn’t pricey enough! I don’t buy my kids clothes just for school; I buy them for when we go out and for family functions. And I despise collar shirts! They are way too much maintenance with ironing and stains. My kids wear nice jeans and T-shirts…and they make excellent grades!

    This is not going to be a positive change for the school system – I’m pulling my kids out.

  67. Anonymous says:

    The will of the few pushed on the will of the many. Hey sounds like just about everything else in America anymore.

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