Hamden Public Schools District Policies

5132 - Dress and Grooming

The Hamden Board dress code policy aims to maintain a safe and stable learning environment while allowing students to respectfully express their individuality.

Students are encouraged to dress in clean clothing. Student attire and grooming restrictions apply whenever the mode of dress in question: 

  1. Is unsafe either for the student or for those around the student.
  2. Is disruptive of school operations and of the educational process in general.
  3. Is contrary to law.
  4. Depicts or advocates violence, criminal activity, use of alcohol or drugs, pornography or hate speech.
  5. Contains or can be construed to be racist, misogynistic, lewd, vulgar, or obscene, defamatory, or threatening.

No restrictions on freedom of dress and adornment will be imposed which: 

  1. Enforce particular religious tenets or codes of morality.
  2. Attempt to dictate or adjudicate style or taste.
  3. Do not fall within the direct or implied powers of the Board of Education.
  4. Reflect discrimination as to civil rights.

School-directed changes to a student’s attire or grooming should be incremental starting with the least restrictive and disruptive measures to the student’s school day. Any school dress code enforcement actions should aim to minimize the potential loss of educational time. Students shall be given the opportunity to adjust their attire in the most immediate and least disruptive manner so they can continue to participate in class or school related activities.

Enforcement of the dress code shall be gender neutral. School staff shall enforce the dress code consistently, incrementally, and in a sensitive manner that does not reinforce or increase marginalization of any group based on race, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion, cultural observance, household income or body type/size.

If the attire or grooming of a student poses a threat to the health and safety of any other person, the appropriate solution as stated in the administrative regulation will be followed.

For special cases that require specific exceptions the reasons must be documented and approved by the school administration in writing.

(cf. 5144  Discipline)

(cf. 5145.2 Freedom of Speech/Expression)


Legal Reference:      
Connecticut General Statutes

10-221  Boards of Education to prescribe rules, policies and procedures.

P.A. 11-55  An Act Concerning Discrimination

P.A. 11-232  An Act Concerning the Strengthening of School Bullying Laws


Policy revised:  January 14, 2020                                                             
Policy adopted:    June 8, 2004    HAMDEN PUBLIC SCHOOLS
      Hamden, Connecticut