In case you missed it, there’s been a recent hubbub in the news about parents wearing their pajamas to drop off their children at school, and schools making about it. Most recently, a primary school in the United Kingdom sent home a letter to parents and caregivers asking them politely to “have a wash and get dressed” because it’s “not too much to ask.”
As you can imagine, there are mothers and fathers all over the world who read this news and started chiming in on whether or not this lady was spot on or off her rocker. The head of school states in a letter that it is “important for us to set a good example about what is appropriate and acceptable in all aspects of life…”
There were plenty of supporters. A friend of mine commented that she thought it was best to be dressed, that you would never know whom you might run into, if even to only appear in the drive through lane to boot your kid out of the car. Others can be seen openly protesting in bathrobes at bus stops. I can honestly say that I fall somewhere in between.
When I am out and about and I see someone wearing pajama bottoms, after a brief daydream about how comfortably they probably go through their lives, I can’t help but think their mothers would rather they grow up and put on some real pants. I know I would scold my own kids for wearing such loungewear in the real world, where any given stranger could be a teacher, leader, or potential employer.
But then again, I’m not one of those people who spring out of bed whistling a jolly tune, and every iota of energy and focus I have in the morning is given to making sure our children are clothed, fed, and have practiced at least one acceptable form of hygiene. Any leftover concentration goes to preparing and consuming coffee that will hopefully kick in in time for me to be able to shoo kids into the car to whisk them away to school on time. (Since busing doesn’t work for us, the transportation duty falls onto us.)
When it comes time to take the kids to school, I don’t know if I would quite fit the mold of model parent that the head of school at that British institution had in mind, but I do take time to make myself appropriate and acceptable. On a daily basis, on the chance I do happen upon someone and so that I can teach my children a lesson or two about public appearance, I take the following precautions: I make sure I am wearing shoes and my bed head is properly covered with a hat.
And we are never late.
Originally written 2.7.16