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OGDEN, Utah (AP) -- Teachers may soon have to start watching what they wear at Ogden city schools.
The school board members are discussing what they consider improper attire in schools. Examples cited include female teachers wearing "clam diggers" (short cropped pants) and decal sweatshirts. Male teachers' attire of khaki shorts, T-shirts and sandals is also in question.
"Standards have to be set in the schools, and it starts with professional teacher dress," board vice chairman John Gullo said.
The board has not proposed a dress code policy, but plans to discuss the issue at an upcoming meeting. District guidelines for employees are not specific, generally requiring they be a good example in dress, conduct and interpersonal relations.
Teachers voiced mixed opinions on the issue, with some pointing out that an educator's dress depends on what type of class they teach.
"If you're the pottery teacher, you're not going to wear a tie," said Ogden High School art teacher Ed Palmer, who was dressed in a plaid short-sleeve, button-down shirt, jeans and tennis shoes.
Some instructors say if the district wants teachers to wear nice clothes, they should pay them more. They also said that with no air conditioning in many of the district's schools, dressing cool is the main priority during warmer months.
While the discussion is ongoing, many observers feel the school board's focus on the issue is "silly." They point to other important issues such as meeting the challenges of the No Child Left Behind federal mandate, dealing with the district's aging school buildings, and improving education in general.
Other school districts in northern Utah have various dress codes for employees, some more specific than others.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)