Sharon School Officials OK SMS 'Celebratory Clothing' Text
The middle school will discourage, but not ban, students from wearing such clothes to school next year.
Wearing "celebratory clothing" such as the T-shirts received by bar and bat mitzvah guests officially will be discouraged at Sharon Middle School during the next school year.
Members Emily Smith-Lee and Jonathan Hitter were not present for the vote, held in the middle school's administration conference room.
Chairman Laura Salomons said Hitter told her "he still has some concerns about the language."
"He doesn't necessarily oppose it, but I think he would want to just suggest publicly that the Sharon Middle School staff reach out to parents and students, and even to the rabbis of the local temples, and have a conversation about it," Salomons said.
School officials said last week the clothing wouldn't be banned.
"If you walk into our cafeteria on any given Monday, you'll see 50 kids with the same pink T-shirt that has some kid's name on it. And it's a visual reminder of the kids that have been excluded from certain events," Assistant Principal Jackie Mann told the board at that time.
"By no means are we suggesting that we dictate who gets invited to an event. But, it really impacts the culture and climate, particularly in the cafeteria, where all the students are together."
Newton's Oak Hill Middle School has similar language in its student handbook, Mann said.
Mann said the handbook change proposed by the middle school council is "something that we've discussed for years at the middle school and haven't really taken action."