Thursday, February 28, 2013

Belts for School for Kindergarten and Elementary aged Kids

I'm aware of the controversy that requiring a belt as part of school dress code can stir in different communities. Some say that it simply completes an outfit. Others argue that it is a way to fight the fashion trend known as sagging, to get kids to wear their pants with the waistline above the hips. Debating the merits of such "droopy drawers" laws or the motivations of them is not why I bring it up today. Instead, I bring it up to open the conversation around compliance and enforcement in school uniform policies, especially for the youngest students.

Our daycare requested that parents not send kids to school wearing belts or other clothing that might interfere with potty training. Even for the kids that have mastered the potty, urges can still come on quickly. So for those with little fingers still learning to button and unbutton and learning to work zippers, a belt could easily be the straw that breaks the camels back. An accident with preschoolers is not uncommon and doesn't raise many eyebrows with their peers. But if that we're to happen in Kindergarten where they are "big kids" now, well that could cause a major upset. I realize that when it does happen in elementary schools that most teachers handle it discreetly as to not cause embarrassment for the youngster. But think back to your early school years, don't you remember the kid that peed his pants? Last week, my daughter came home telling this grand story about her friend that "throwed up" in the classroom.  These things are quite memorable at this tender age. Oh, the emotional scarring!

Okay but more seriously, you don't want your youngster to suffer this type of embarrassment. We do what we can to prevent it. We pack a change of clothes in a baggie in the backpack. You might have another in the car. Oh, the scars that are left on us moms that have survived the potty training years. So back to the belts...

The uniform policy at my daughters school calls for belts to be worn on all bottoms with belt loops. At the beginning of the school year, I had trouble finding a navy, black or brown belt. If I found any kids belts at my local stores, they were in bright colors and many times were decorated with sequins or studs.  The boys departments might have better results. But I end up ordering one online from French Toast. It turned out to be a boys belt too at least according to the packaging slip. Shh, don't tell my daughter.

So my admission, I don't make her wear it yet. And so far, it doesn't seem that our school enforces it, at least with the Kindergarten classes. I'm curious, does your school have a belt policy and do they enforce it with the youngest kids? If they don't, at what age/grade do they begin enforcement?

Have you heard of these belts that are made for the preschoolers and young kids that are easy for them to do themselves? Easy open, easy close. If so, please chime in in the comments below. What type of belt worked for your little one(s)? Where did you buy it? What did you think? What did your little one think of it?  


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