Photo Credit: Creative Commons
By: Ethan Rampersaud
On some days at lunch, students could be eating their lunches, when someone would order them to go to the principal’s office and get reprimanded for one object. What is that object? A hat. According to the Pasco County School District Code of Conduct, students are not allowed to wear hats on school premises. Why are hats not allowed in school whatsoever? Even when outside the classroom, these hats are banned. Although hats are allowed on different times of the year, school campuses, such as Wesley Chapel Elementary School, charge others to wear hats on the campus. If the school district allows the wearing of hats with a small fee, why could they not do it for free in all campuses? There is nothing wrong with wearing a hat on school grounds; hats allow one to freely express themselves, help them keep cool in the shade, and are not being used to conceal a more vile agenda. Because of these reasons, the Pasco County School District should allow students to wear hats.
First and foremost, hats allow students to freely express their opinion. Hats that state a school appropriate opinion or belief should be allowed to be worn on campus. Hats can be permitted to be worn outside of the classroom instead of in the classroom, so that there are no distractions. Hats and headpieces can also be pieces of art made by others, ranging from a simple newspaper hat to a complex mask that is worn. For example, a student in the 5th grade can create a creative and vivid pilgrim’s hat, and they can wear it to show their artwork to others, rather than have it thrown away since it violates the school district’s code of conduct. When worn, this creative art acts to vent a student’s individuality and allows them to express their emotions instead of constricting it inside.
Furthermore, hats can cool down students on a hot day. For instance, some cooling hats are invented to cool down the wearer. While some may recommend a shaded area to keep cool, hats may also work as a portable shade for students and can keep them cool outside of shade. Ergo, this allows hats to have some purpose in school other than a fashion statement.
While others may claim that hats can be made concealed places for items such as drugs or lethal weapons, the same could be said for the backpack. The backpack can carry many things in several pouches. For instance, a modern Swiss army backpack has several pouches that can be used to carry a myriad of objects, such as two side pouches for water. A teacher might not suspect a student carrying drugs unless a police canine had sniffed it out and exposed them. Even with all these reasons, backpacks are not banned nor restricted. While backpacks are still in use, some students are able to conceal illegal items deep inside the backpack without suspicion.
Hats should be permitted in the school environment. Hats allow students to express their feelings in the form of headwear attire. Furthermore, hats can assist in cooling down students on hot summer days in Florida. Lastly, although some may claim that a hat can be used as a hiding place for inappropriate objects when on school campus, one could also say that backpacks could be used for hiding those same objects. If the district does decide to allow hats on school campus, they could be allowed to be in use outside the classroom as to not cause a distraction or disturbance to other students. Campuses can also encourage the wearing of thematic hats for pep rallies and school spirit. In this way, the school system still functions regularly while allowing hats on campus.