St. John reaches tattoo decision

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 3, 2008


News Editor

RESERVE—The uproar over a new regulation in East St. John High School’s uniform policy was finally laid to rest by the St. John Parish School Board.

The board unanimously passed a measure regarding body art for all students of St. John the Baptist Parish public schools.

The new regulation somewhat scaled back the original dictate of “tattoos must be covered at all times” to the more moderate “visible tattoos which are lewd, gang-related, or cause a disruption or safety concern are prohibited.”

The measure, however, was expanded to prohibit “displaying body-piercing jewelry with the exception of pierced ears.”

As explained in the first part of the code, the board’s reasoning behind passing the regulation was to ensure that the focus in the classroom stays on education and to limit “risk taking behaviors involved in such fads as body piercing and tattooing.” It goes on to say that such behaviors may “result in serious, life-long health problems and/or limit future career options.”

The new regulation was originally drafted at a meeting of the Disciplinary Committee a couple of weeks ago but could not be added to the school board’s agenda until last Thursday.

When reached for comment, East St. John’s principal, Patricia Triche, said she thought it was unfortunate that so much attention was being paid to matters such as tattooing when so many good things were happening East St. John High School.