In previous years at Marlborough School, members of the administration, such as Head of School Barbara Wagner and Dean of Faculty and Mathematics instructor Sandra O’Connor, have spoken to some teachers for not properly following the School’s dress code. Wagner has addressed the issue of teachers dressing unprofessionally at more than one faculty meeting.
“Marlborough has a code for the faculty and staff uniform; a code is like a set of rules within boundaries you can’t go outside of,” History and Social Sciences instructor Tom Millar said.
The teachers do not have to wear particular shirts or pants, but they do need to dress professionally. The faculty dress code is in the Employee Handbook, which elaborates on the dos and don’ts of teacher attire. Men are expected to wear dress pants, a collared dress shirt, and a tie. Women are expected to wear suits, dresses, or skirts of an appropriate length for a professional setting. Low-cut or tight-fitting clothes are not permitted. More casual attire, such as yoga pants and shorts, are also not permitted, except for those whose jobs actually require them, such as a Physical Education instructors.
For special events, such as graduation and traditional ceremonies, employees are asked to dress more formally.
Six years ago, the school started letting faculty wear jeans and other “business casual” attire on casual Fridays.
Prior to this school year, Millar said that he had seen other teachers not obey the dress-code rules. “I have seen male faculty and staff members wear shirts without a collar, and basically if you wear a shirt without a collar, you are starting to get in t-shirt area,” Millar said. Millar also noted that some male teachers wore “old, worn-out polo shirts that are very long and not tucked in,” which is considered unprofessional even on casual Fridays.
Marlborough students have their own impression of the teacher “uniform.”
“I think it’s important for teachers to wear professional attire because it makes the school look more put-together,” Noa ’16 said. Then, Noa concluded, “Also I feel like the teachers are respected when dressing nicely, because they look well-qualified to the students, parents, and visitors.”
Many students feel that faculty must set a standard for adherence to the dress code if they expect students to follow the uniform.
“I think it is unfair for teachers to give us infractions for not following the dress code if they don’t follow the dress code themselves,” Noa said.
This school year, the faculty dress code has not yet been a problem. “I haven’t had to speak with anyone about their attire this school year,” O’Connor said.