UPDATE: Admin continues to enforce hat policy; students still challenge it

Natalie Dillivan

More stories from Natalie Dillivan

December 12, 2019

Natalie Dillivan

Seniors Jon Moore (left) and Ben Jackson say they oppose the current PHS hat policy.

Hats: Mesh, cotton, nylon and plastic all sewed together to form an object used mainly as sun protection. These hats are simple creations, and the policy for these hats is as such, but some students would describe it as intense.

I’m just used to it; I wear my hat everywhere.”

— Sophomoe Tate Barhaugh

Many teachers enforce the policy, but Powell High School Principal Mr. Jim Kuhn is the running chief of the hat lockdown.

According to a previous Prowl story by Wyatt Murray, this policy is not new, but parts are being added on. The policy in the Student Handbook states, “Caps and hats shall be removed upon entering the building in accordance with basic good manners.”

This year, an addition was implemented. Teachers will now be allowed to take any hats being worn in the school, and the teachers are able to hold the hats captive for as many days as they deem necessary.

Many teachers enforce this new part of the policy, but Mr. Kuhn is basically in charge of it.

“More and more years people have started to wear hats in the spring,” Mr. Kuhn said. “I think last year, I didn’t do a very good job of enforcing the policy.”

Mr. Kuhn said he describes himself as an old-fashioned person who believes if the school is going to have this rule, then it needs to be enforced.

“I’d just like to have a well dressed, clean-cut group of students,” Mr. Kuhn said. “I think it’s a sign of respect.”

“I’d just like to have a well dressed, clean-cut group of students.”

— PHS Principal Mr. Jim Kuhn

Even though Mr. Kuhn and the rest of the Powell High School are all on board with the new addition to the policy, this question remains: What is the real reason behind why the students at PHS disagree with the policy?

Sophomore Tate Barhaugh and senior Jon Moore both are involved in the summer with various outdoor activities and spend 90 percent of those three months wearing their baseball caps.

“I’m just used to it; I wear my hat everywhere,” Barhaugh said. “As soon as I go outside, my hat goes on. It also doesn’t make any sense to me. At the dinner table, you take your hat off to respect the people who gave you food. Here it doesn’t make any sense.”

Moore had similar points.

“It gives you nice protection, and I form a habit of wearing one,” Moore said.

Even though he is not a fan of the policy, he does know why it’s important.

“ Force of habit makes it hard to always remember to take your hat off,” Moore said.

One faculty member said it might have something to do with the age gap.

“Perhaps it’s a generational thing,” said Prowl adviser Mr. Vin Cappiello. “We learned at a young age to remove our hats inside any building where the American flag is flying on the outside. So really it’s about respecting the flag.”

Another senior said he disagrees with the policy.

“I think it’s a stupid rule; I don’t see how it’s disrespectful,” senior Ben Jackson said.