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What should a high/secondary school teacher wear? - Page 2

post #16 of 25
A suit plus tie etc would be my expectation. Given that in many state run institutions anything more than jogging bottoms is considered well dressed, I will continue to despair of teachers. Indeed I despair that you have even asked and are not busily ensuring that you have sufficient suits available without further guidance.

If the pupils have to wear a uniform then teachers should respond with decent clothes without prompting. If the pupils are not in uniform then the teachers should dress the same regardless to set an example. However one would hope parents would avoid schools without uniform.
post #17 of 25

I would think no jeans, no sneakers, and no t-shirts (at least as outerwear). Even growing up in Texas, I can't remember a teacher that ever wore one of those 3. They usually wore slacks, polos, or a dress/sport shirt. I cannot remember any teacher even wearing a SC much less a suit (although I didn't have too many male teachers I suppose).

post #18 of 25
I teach at a private day school in Connecticut. I have had the good fortune to marry well, so money isn't really that much of an issue. I dress for my own enjoyment - a range of suits from JAB to BB to Samuelsohn to Isaia - most are OTR, some are MTM. I am a shoe nut and really go overboard there. On Fridays or other "dress down" days when we relax the student dress code, I'll wear a sportcoat

My kids love it, the faculty tease or mock me, but, hey, it's all in fun.

I have taught for 25 years. I'd suggest starting out modestly - odd jacket and tie or with a nice knit mock. Build your identity based on who you are, how you teach, and how you serve your students - then let yourself go and dress how you want.

Good luck with the teaching.
post #19 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by impolyt_one 
OP will be not far in age from the students he will teach. Any bit of distance will help. Dress well, and your students will think much better of you.
Excellent advice - particularly the second sentence.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikias 
I presume you'll be starting out teaching at a comp. There are probably staff dress codes against the wearing of jeans and trainers etc. so it's probably up to you whether you go for a full suit option or the jumpers, jackets and trousers route (although a tie is advisable). I do have some limited teaching experience and I would say that developing a professional persona is important for classroom control.
As a teacher in the UK for 36 years, partly in a secondary school (which had a uniform for the students) and partly in a 6th form College (where there was no uniform for students), I wore a sports jacket and tie daily throughout my teaching career, and would never have dreamt of omitting the tie. (For USA readers, the 6th form is the last two years of secondary school, i.e. students of 16-19 years of age) in England and Wales.)
Quote:
Originally Posted by GBR 
A suit plus tie etc would be my expectation. Given that in many state run institutions anything more than jogging bottoms is considered well dressed, I will continue to despair of teachers...If the pupils have to wear a uniform then teachers should respond with decent clothes without prompting. If the pupils are not in uniform then the teachers should dress the same regardless to set an example. However one would hope parents would avoid schools without uniform.
You are making unjust dogmatic statements here. The quality of a school or college has no correlation whatever with its student uniform policy. I wonder when you were last in a "state-run" school in the UK, or when you last met or spoke to a teacher from such an institution. You are of course right that teachers should wear decent clothes without prompting as they should be setting an example. But a suit every day is, in my opinion and experience, going too far.
post #20 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by williamson View Post

You are making unjust dogmatic statements here. The quality of a school or college has no correlation whatever with its student uniform policy. I wonder when you were last in a "state-run" school in the UK, or when you last met or spoke to a teacher from such an institution. You are of course right that teachers should wear decent clothes without prompting as they should be setting an example. But a suit every day is, in my opinion and experience, going too far.

Agreed, I've noticed his statements tend to be pretty ignorant.
post #21 of 25
All my teachers wore suits.
post #22 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhood View Post

All my teachers wore suits.

all my teachers were women.
post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by williamson View Post

As a teacher in the UK for 36 years, partly in a secondary school (which had a uniform for the students) and partly in a 6th form College (where there was no uniform for students), I wore a sports jacket and tie daily throughout my teaching career, and would never have dreamt of omitting the tie. (For USA readers, the 6th form is the last two years of secondary school, i.e. students of 16-19 years of age) in England and Wales.)

I would also recommend wearing a tie and thought I said as much above, so apologies if I implied otherwise. I do seem to recall some of my teachers going open-collar at times, however, and my girlfriend working at an FE college in Croydon does say that many of the male staff there forgo a tie. So it seems that perhaps standards are slipping, unfortunately.
post #24 of 25

I never had a teacher in a suit in the UK, in either state or private schools. SC and tie, sure, but suits, no. Every school has different standards, so there's really no point in asking people here. Ask the school what their minimum expectations are and decide how much you want to exceed them. Ultimately, the important thing is to be a good teacher and that's what I would concentrate on. If you are, then you can probably get away with a lot; if you aren't, making yourself stand out sartorially will just make your pedagogical failings more obvious.

post #25 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhood 
All my teachers wore suits.
We all think that the education we received is definitive. But all teachers wearing suits is rare; I would associate it much more with private schools. Many headmasters/principals in the public sector wear suits, but few classroom teachers do.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikias 
I would also recommend wearing a tie and thought I said as much above, so apologies if I implied otherwise. I do seem to recall some of my teachers going open-collar at times, however, and my girlfriend working at an FE college in Croydon does say that many of the male staff there forgo a tie. So it seems that perhaps standards are slipping, unfortunately.
No apology necessary! You did indeed recommend wearing a tie; I compliment you on that (and I quoted you as saying so). Colleges of all kinds (including some 6th-form colleges) are more informal than secondary schools, but I do think that going open-collar shows a slipping of standards.
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