Crocs, the lightweight Swiss cheese-looking clog cousin to flip flops, are getting socked at some schools across the country. Heelys, the transforming shoe that's sneaker one minute, roller skate the next, also are getting the closed door treatment.

Crocs, the lightweight Swiss cheese-looking clog cousin to flip flops, are getting socked at some schools across the country. Heelys, the transforming shoe that's sneaker one minute, roller skate the next, also are getting the closed door treatment.

That's not the case in area school districts, however, as a number of districts haven't seen any recent changes to their dress code policies.

“Really, at Alfred-Almond, there hasn't been much of a change, because our policies and regulations say anything that would be disruptive of the learning process would not be appropriate,” said Rich Nicol, superintendent at Alfred-Almond Central School. “If Heelys were being used in a disruptive manner or something in an unsafe manner, they would not be appropriate.”

Nicol hasn't heard any complaints about kids footwear, and wondered about safety concerns surrounding Crocs.

“I've seen them around school, but I see a lot of nurses wearing them too,” he said.

George Kiley, superintendent of the Hornell City School District, said Hornell's policy is pretty standard.

   

“You do not wear anything objectionable or that poses a safety risk,” he said, adding Crocs and Heelys are not prohibited from schools. “We don't allow our students to have the wheels down, and if students are wearing them, I haven't seen them skating through the halls.

“We haven't had any issues with Crocs, though people tell me they're really comfortable,” Kiley added.

There have been no changes in Hornell's dress code policy since he took over in the district two-plus years ago.

   

“Our parents and our students do a pretty good job of sending the kids to school appropriately dressed,” Kiley said. “If there is a problem, we just make a phone call and it's taken care of.”

Nicol said the A-A school principals deal more with dress code issues, but added he hadn't heard concerns from his administrators about the district's policy.

“Our dress code policy is built around whether something is disruptive or unsafe,” he said. “From my perspective, in talking with my principals, dress has not been a major issue in years and years around here.

   

“Every now and then we find something that's not appropriate,” Nicol added. “Typically we'll find, in working with the parents to let them know about inappropriate dress, the kids have changed their clothes on the way to school and the parents are happy to find out.”

Michael Wright, who serves as high school principal for the Canisteo-Greenwood Central School District, said C-G hasn't made any changes to its policy, and students generally comply with the policy. He said he's dealt with no more than six issues dealing with dress this school year, which is slightly better than years past.

“We do an assembly at the beginning of the year with all the grade levels where we address a number of regulations, and the dress code is included in that,” Wright said. “We go over that with the students so they understand the expectations at the beginning of the year.”

   

On Canisteo-Greenwood's do-not-wear list are undergarments not covered by outer clothing, which Wright called “a big one,” and head coverings, such as hats or bandannas. Footwear is required at all times, though Wright said no types of footwear have been “banned” by the district, and shorts or skirts must extend below the individual's middle finger when their arms are resting at their sides.

“Typically, at the beginning of the school year, you get some challenges,” Wright said, “but it's not a big issue. Most kids understand and comply.”

Not allowed in the Arkport Central School District, like other districts, is clothing that advertises or displays a message promoting alcohol or drug use, profane or suggestive language, and anything that discriminates against others. Arkport Superintendent William Locke said the district's dress code is designed to keep the educational purpose of the school intact.

   

“You can't wear something that would interrupt or disrupt the educational process,” he said.

Arkport also hasn't done anything to prevent people from wearing Crocs, though Locke said in the past a few people that showed up wearing Heelys were asked not to wear them at school. The district also prohibits tube tops, spaghetti strap tops, plunging necklines, midriff-baring clothing and head coverings.

“The only exclusion from head coverings is if it's a religious thing,” Locke said. “All they have to do is provide documentation and there's no problem.”

   

Footwear restrictions at Arkport are classroom specific, he said, giving an example of flip flops not being allowed in the technology area.

“Anything that would be a safety hazard would not be appropriate,” Locke said. “We have regulations appropriate with the curriculum being taught.”