Shoes don't make the teacher

So I have this on my mind tonight and I want to enjoy my weekend without being frustrated. Yesterday, I took my daughter to school. It was forecasted to be warm (it was 96 yesterday), so I wore my capris, a nice shirt and my "nice" flip flops ( they cost more than the ones at Old Navy!). A parent, who has a habit of questioning my clothing choices, said "oh, do you have training today?". I told her I did not. Then she asked if I was on spring break. Again, no. She commented that her sister is a teacher somewhere and she could never getaway with wearing flip flops. She can't believe that teachers are allowed to flip fls to school. I told her that my shoes don't make me a good teacher and that my kids don't care what I wear, as long as i teach them something. I don't dress super professional, but i also don't dress like I'm doing yard work, and yes, we have a couple teachers who dress like they are doing years work. When I student taught, I almost always wore a skirt, a dress or nice dress pants. On days it snowed, I wore jeans, but they were almost a necessity in the snow! When I started teaching, I went out and bought some new nicer clothes. I wore them all the time, while everyone else wore jeans, shorts, etc. Over the years, I have changed my clothes a bit. I try not to wear jeans that often, except for when it rains, on Fridays, and honestly, lately on Thursday's. I still try to look like a teacher and less like a Walmart worker. But, when it comes to spring/summer and warm/hot days, my feet don't want to be in fancy shoes. So flip flops it is. I'm comfortable, I can still do my job and my kids don't care! The principal doesn't care what we wear to school, as long as we are covered. My boobs and ass are completely covered, my clothes are clean and neat, heck, my toenails are even painted! I do think that teachers have gotten lazy with their clothing choices, but it doesn't make them a good teacher or a bad teacher. Good teachers can dress like slobs and bad teachers can dress totally professionally. We should hope teachers are comfortable, especially since we are getting screwed in every other aspect in the job nowadays. I'm gonna keep wearing my flip flops and doing my job as best I can with my kids. It doesn't matter if I'm in flip flops or loafers, boots or tennis shoes - my job is to teach my kids and have a little fun! What do you think?


  1. Oh, I bet she'd have a it with MY wardrobe... usually leggings(not tight though) ballet flats in warm months, boots in winter, and a longer drapey knit top or sweater. Kicker is I have a tattoo on my foot which shows ALL warm months.
    I dress comfortably for my job. I sit on the floor with my kids, and I am NOT wearing ANYTHING that needs to be dry cleaned.

  2. I hate condescending people! I can't believe that lady said that to you! I agree that you can dress totally professional and still be a terrible teacher, just like you can wear jeans and be a wonderful one. We aren't allowed to wear blue jeans in my district so I wear black, gray, and navy ones all the time since the official rule only says "blue" jeans :o)

  3. I am a young male teacher at the intermediate level. When I did my first student teaching assignment (fifth grade) I modeled my dress after the other male teachers in the building: shorts and nice shirts with collars. My supervisor suggested I wear slacks or khakis, so I did. When I did my full take-over, I decided to wear a tie because I owned over a hundred of them. Everyone commented on how great I looked, and my students seemed to be more respectful.

    Then I student taught first grade in a building where the only other male was the principal. (Even the custodian was a woman.) I decided to wear slacks, dress shirt, and tie every day. The kids got a kick out of it; in fact, they all wore ties on my last day!

    So when I started working as a sub, I decided I'd always wear a tie. And now that I work full-time, I still do, unless it is a day I have to wear a school t-shirt (about once a month or so). I don't do it because I have to, and I don't expect others to dress the way I do. I do it because I can and because it has become a part of my teacher identity. I think that a teacher needs to carry him- or herself in a professional way, and the way he or she dresses will not matter. Shorts and a hoodie every day can be worn by a teacher who is very professional, and a suit can be worn by a teacher who has no idea what it means to be a professional!

    In other words, I totally agree with you! ;)