Knox Academy is very proud of its tradition of school uniform and the wearing of it helps promote the sense of community within the school and wider community and a feeling of ‘belonging’. Elements that reinforce this, as well as other reasons why wearing uniform is so important, can be found in Knox Academy Uniform - Reasons Why summary.
The Equality Act 2010 legally protects people from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society. The aims of the act and the protected characteristics are upheld by and for all staff and students within Knox Academy to create a safe, inclusive environment for all who attend our school, and our uniform policy plays an important part in this.
Under the Equality Act, there are nine protected characteristics:
- Gender reassignment.
- Marriage and civil partnership.
- Pregnancy and maternity.
- Religion or belief.
- Sexual Orientation
It is our aim that all our young people wear the Knox Academy uniform with pride. To help achieve this aim gender identity and all forms of gender expression will not be discriminated against with regards to uniform. Items are therefore not categorised by gender.
Pupils are free to wear whichever items of uniform they feel most comfortable in, as long as uniform standards are upheld.
A few years ago our young people and parents/carers were consulted on what they wished the school uniform to comprise, and this uniform will continue for session 2023-24.
All pupils are expected to comply with the dress code (school uniform) and maintain a high standard of appearance. The support of parents in this regard is appreciated.
The school uniform will be as follows:
- White/black shirt
- Tie (with House stripe on it)
- Black v-neck or crew neck jumper (plain, over a shirt, and only with school logos or no logos)
- Black trousers/solid black jeans or skirt (no leggings or ripped/blue jeans)
- Headcoverings – worn for cultural or religious reasons, should be black
- No hats/hooded tops/baseball cap to be worn in the school
- Black shoes
- School blazer (for all in S5 & S6)
Each pupil belongs to a House at the school; another way of building community. Therefore, to support the House ethos, new school ties were designed last year. These House ties feature the Knox Academy logo and have a stripe below this in the House colours the pupil belongs to. If your young person is in S3-S5 at present and you would like support with replacing the tie, please speak to their Pupil Support Leader (Guidance).
In relation to health and safety, hooded tops of any description will not be acceptable dress code (this includes Knox Academy sports hooded tops which should only be worn for sports). Often young people are tempted to wear their hoods up and this compromises everyone’s safety. We need to ensure that everyone’s faces are visible in and around the building at all times so we can keep everyone safe.
Shoes should be all black so as to avoid pointless discussions on those with logos attached and other elements of colour. White shoes, which may be fine for PE, are not part of the school uniform. A skirt should be of an appropriate length for wearing in a school based environment. Trousers should be whole, rather than with designer holes or tears which are not suitable for a working environment.
Our hope is that this presents a more simplified, consistent approach, in that the expectations for all year groups will be the same (with the exception of blazers for S5/S6). The school tie will be available to purchase from the School Office at a cost of £6.15. For the purchase of school blazers, we arrange a date in school for fittings and then blazers can be purchased through Border Embroideries, however parents/carers are able to purchase all other items of clothing from whichever outlet they wish, so long as they conform to the expectations.
Financial support in buying school uniform is available from East Lothian Council. For details of eligibility and how to apply please visit the East Lothian Council website.
We have started a ‘Dress Code Donation Drop’ at Parents’ Evenings in order to recycle outgrown dress code. For a small donation, these garments will be up-cycled for use by other families/pupils at these evenings. More information will follow on where to hand clothing in to. As well as supporting families it also supports our Eco-School approach. I thank you in advance for your co-operation in ensuring that pupils adhere to the school’s uniform expectations and I trust that this period of notice will allow you to make the necessary arrangements so that we can start the new session in style.
Prefects are expected to wear blazers with the school crest and gold braiding. School Blazers are also available through Border Embroideries.
Pupils involved in such activities are expected to dress in School Uniform.
Health and Safety
Pupils will be requested to remove ties in practical subjects when the wearing of them might breach Health and Safety regulations e.g. during a science experiment.
To participate fully in PE and sport pupils need gym shoes, shorts, t-shirts and football/ rugby/hockey boots if possible.
Assistance with Provision of Clothing and Footwear
The Council operates a scheme of provision to ensure that a pupil is sufficiently and suitably clad, to take full advantage of the education provided. Families in receipt of Income based Job Seekers’ Allowance or Income Support will qualify for such a scheme. Other cases may be considered in the case of exceptional personal circumstances. Parents who wish to apply for the scheme should complete an application form, which is available from the Department of Education & Children’s Services, Pupil Support, John Muir House, Haddington, EH41 3HA.
Pupils are asked to hand money and/or valuables to PE Staff during PE. At other times, they should hand their valuables to the school office for safekeeping, however the school cannot guarantee total security.