As storm Gertrude blows in with a rare red warning for the North, another storm has blown up on social media about Pyjamas on the School run. Pyjama etiquette has been rumbling around for some time. Not so long ago we reported on how Yummy Mummy had become Slummy Mummy at the school gates. But a head teacher in Darlington has caused quite a stir by writing to parents about dress code. Kate Chisolm noted an “increasing tendency for parents to escort their children to and from school while still wearing their pyjamas” and she went on to ask them to take the time to dress appropriately and set a good example to their children. In a sign of our times, this letter sent to a few hundred local parents, was reported in the local paper and has now gone viral. The paper’s story has had more than 10,000 shares on Facebook and prompted thousands of comments from around the English speaking world. To some, this is a form of outdated tyranny of the highest order. Who is a head teacher to dictate what someone should or should not wear? Why shouldn’t some parents be comfy? Does she understand the pressure working mothers are under? Blah blah. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was asked about it while he was visiting the North East. He said, “I wouldn’t do it myself, I’d advise people to wear a coat and put some proper clothes on – it gets cold out there,” which let’s face it is both very helpful advice and a weather forecast.
Daily Mail journalist Kelly Rose Bradford was quick to lecture parents on not wearing Pyjamas on the School Run but was then spotted standing in her son’s school reception the next morning wearing some Christmas-themed pyjamas. Apparently she had been accidentally locked out of the house before she could get properly dressed. The head teacher, Ms Chisholm, said she felt obliged to write the letter when parents started to arrive at parents’ evenings in pyjamas, and that she just wants to ensure her pupils have high aspirations. Our view about Pyjamas on the School Run, for what it’s worth, is that Head teachers are quite within their rights to request appropriate dress but partly it depends on the pyjamas. The way fashion is going you won’t be able to tell the difference between pyjamas and designer Dior. We recommend our school-run approved Wild funzee as classic leopard spots are always in fashion.