Community Expectations

Dress Code Policy

Dress and General Appearance
Students are expected to dress at all times in a way that is consistent with the Academy’s values as expressed in our expectations and throughout the Community Handbook. Cushing Academy expects that all students will dress in a way that respects the atmosphere of learning and sets a proper tone for the primary purpose of school. While the importance of personal style and all it represents should be honored, living and working within a learning community requires that all community members balance personal expression and comfort with respect for the learning environment and the comfort of other members of the community. As a school, the Academy expects that:
 
  • Clothing should promote a positive, focused learning environment
  • Clothing should promote a safe, inclusive community
  • Clothing should align with all other standards and rules of the Academy
  • Clothing should permit students to participate fully in all school activities
  • Clothing should be clean, modest and respectful
Any clothing that meets the following expectations is considered to be in dress code and can be worn during the academic day. The academic day ends when the last class of the day concludes. The follow meets Cushing’s dress code:
 
  • Blouses, dress shirts, collared shirts, sweaters, turtlenecks, quarter and full zips, Cushing sweatshirts and t-shirts. If a student chooses to wear a non-Cushing sweatshirt or t-shirt, it must meet the dress code expectations as outlined below.
  • Dress pants, dresses, skirts, trousers/slacks, khakis, corduroys, cargo pants, opaque and single color leggings, jeans and non-athletic shorts or tailored shorts.
  • Shoes, sneakers, flats and boots.
Any clothing that meets the following expectations are considered to be out of dress code and should not be worn during the academic day. The following does not meet Cushing’s dress code:
 
  • Clothing that depicts, advertises or advocates the use of nicotine, drugs, alcohol, marijuana or any other types of controlled or illegal substances
  • Clothing that depicts, advertises or advocates political messages
  • Clothing that depicts, advertises or advocates violence, offensive and hate base language and images
  • Sweatpants, track pants and sweat shorts
  • Leggings that contain writing, symbols, mesh, lace, have reflective material, are multiple colors or patterns and are not opaque.
  • Athletic wear, including athletic shorts and athletic shirts.
  • Non-Cushing sweatshirts that have multiple colors, contain graphics, images or lettering
  • White t-shirts, undershirts or t-shirts that contain oversized graphics, images, writing or lettering.
  • See-through clothing or non-opaque clothing, exposed midriffs, shoulders or chests, spaghetti-strapped tank tops.
  • Clothing that is patched, torn, or in disrepair
  • Hats, beanies or hoodies inside any building except Watkins Field House, Heslin Gym, Iorio Arena, and dorms
  • Shorts, dresses or skirts that are shorter than mid-thigh in length
  • Swimsuits, pajamas and visible underwear. This includes wearing underwear as outerwear
  • Camouflage or military fatigues
  • Slippers, slide or shower sandals
Please note, while outside of the academic day, students have more flexibility in their clothing choices, dress should remain consistent with the overall values and expectations of the Academy.

SPECIAL ACADEMIC DRESS:
Special dress is required for special dinners and other special gatherings as announced. Students are expected to choose attire that shows respect for these events. As is the case for class dress, students are to dress in a way that respects the atmosphere of learning and sets a proper tone for the primary purpose of the Academy.
Any clothing that meets the following expectations is considered to be in Special Academic Dress:
 
  • Dress shirt with folded collar (e.g. button-down, point, spread) should be tucked in and should be accompanied by a sports jacket, tie and, dress pants or dress shorts
  • Dressy blouse or sweater paired with dressy pants or skirt (the length of which should be at least mid-thigh)
  • Dresses (the length of which should be at least mid-thigh)
  • Outfits representative of other cultures that are consistent with the formality of Special Academic Dress and are worn in an appropriately respectful manner.
  • A sweater or jacket covering the shoulders of apparel that has shoulder straps less than 2 inches wide
  • Tailored shorts, when appropriate
  • Dress shoes or dress sandals in good repair
Any clothing that meets the following expectations are considered to be out of Special Academic dress:
 
  • Clothing that is patched, torn, or in disrepair
  • Jeans, hoodies and sweatshirts
  • Hats unless worn for a religious purpose
  • Athletic wear, athletic shorts and other forms of non-tailored shorts
  • Leggings, cargo pants, jeans, army fatigues, and bib overalls
  • Clothing that is sheer. Or non-opaque
  • Clothing that exposes the midriff, bares the back, has a plunging or low-cut neckline, is skin-tight, has spaghetti straps or is otherwise inappropriately revealing
  • Flip-flops (slide, shower and rubber sandals), sneakers, construction boots or slippers.
General
The fall and spring are changeable, with weather ranging from quite cool to comfortably warm with intermittent rain. Winter can be severe with sub-zero temperatures. We suggest students bring:
 
  • Indoor lightweight clothing that meets the requirements of the dress code: slacks, collared shirts, skirts, khakis, sweaters
  • Fall/spring jackets: outer windbreaker or lightweight jacket
  • Rainwear: waterproof jacket or coat and an umbrella
  • Winter clothing: woolen or heavy sweaters and apparel; a well-insulated ski parka or other heavy coat for sub-zero weather conditions; gloves and hat
  • Footwear: casual shoes, one pair of dress shoes, one pair of heavy winter shoes or boots, and athletic shoes

Cushing Academy

39 School Street
Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430
978-827-7000
admissions@cushing.org

Cushing Academy

Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.

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