The Calcasieu Parish School Board announced overnight that they had met and ultimately voted to suspend the school uniform policy for the remainder of the year. The policy was put in place back in the 2001 to 2002 school year, and I remember it well since I graduated in 2001. Parents scrambled for the new school year to buy the proper uniforms for the next year for their students.

The CPSB Facebook page lit up with comments from parents on both sides of the new decision to eliminate the uniforms for the year. It seems the vote stems from the lack of supply of uniforms in the area after two hurricanes. This makes it difficult to find the uniforms, let alone afford them as monies are being tied up in other areas like rebuilding homes.

Parents commented on the page that some schools hadn't quite gotten the memo from the CPSB as their students got to school this morning. One concerned parent even reached out to the CPSB to confirm if it was based on the school's decision, but verified that it indeed is for all Calcasieu Parish schools.

I can remember back in my elementary school days, I mostly wore handmade clothes by my grandmother and got made fun of a bit here and there. Later on in middle school, Tommy Hilfiger was the go-to shirt for the times. If you didn't have one, you were not part of the cool crowd. The funniest thing about those times was during winter. Starter jackets were the hot thing for the season. I never wanted one, as I preferred hoodies. Plus, I never was in to sports. Still, I was one of the few who didn't have a Starter jacket and it was made known as such. Uniforms would have changed a lot of that judgement back in the school days, and that was a huge reason for making the uniform policy.

With the situation we are in and supplies of uniforms on the scarce side, including not having the extra money to replace uniforms at the moment, it seems like a logical decision to eliminate the current need for them. It just might also be a good teaching moment to remind students we should not judge people based on what they wear. After all, I can remember wearing Kmart champion sweatshirts growing up because they were cheap. Now, they go for a whole lot more money than any of us ever thought.

The decision to remove the uniform policy, as it stands, will be in place for the rest of the 2020-2021 school year.

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