Jackson Co. 6-12 Graders Could Be Wearing School Uniforms Next Year

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Marianna- During Thursday night's school board meeting, Jackson County principals took the issue of dress code into their own hands.

"With all the mandates coming down from [the Department of Education] we're trying to eliminate as many distractions as we possibly can so that [students] can improve academically" said Jennifer See Cottondale High School Principal.

And though all distractions could never be eliminated, officials believe a new uniform, if instated, would certainly be one of them.

"The proposed dress code is pants, capri's, skirts, shorts- to the knee- of a tan, khaki nature" See explained, "and we will have a solid color polo and that color will be determined by school. We just, right now, are assuming it will be school colors. Our school colors are orange and blue. So, we would probably go with a royal blue polo and khaki colored pants."

See said she believed the switch would promote school safety and boost academic performance.

"Our kids already feel safe. I hope they begin to feel safer. That they know the people who are supposed to be [at school] because they're dressed a certain way. There's lots of research that shows when you take out distractions like clothing, scores are going to improve" she said.

Some argue school uniforms would inhibit students ability to express their individuality. To that, See said, "don't let what you wear define you. Let how you achieve academically, or socially, or athletically- let that be your shining moment. Not necessarily what you wear."

She and school board officials encouraged parents to contact them with feedback, questions or concerns. The issue has not been put on the agenda for a vote and remains in the "discussion" stages.