Blazers Be Gone

Archival research by Caroline Donatelli ’18. She may be reached at

These days, the dress code allows students to walk into classes wearing T-shirts and sweatpants, no questions asked. 30 years ago, the School decided to no longer require formal wear at dinner. The rule change made the front page of The News.

Last Wednesday, for the first time this year, Choate students witnessed a new dress code for dinner in which class dress was allowed. Much of the credit for allowing this alteration goes to Mr. Charles Dey and Mr. Thomas Yankus.

There exist many reasons for this new change. First, the deans were looking for a break in the middle of the week to alleviate the tensions and pressures during the winter. Since many of the teams compete on Wednesdays, the deans thought it would be a good idea to enforce the class dress code. It was an inconvenience for the players to change into dinner dress and rush to the dining hall. Also, since the dining hall committee did such a terrific job in keeping both dining halls clean, the deans thought that the new dress code was justified.

The genesis of the new dress code proposal begins with John Lasala who wrote the proposal. Although he did not formally present it to the student council or the deans, he did discuss it with several administrators including Mr. Yankus. At first, not many deans seemed in favor of a new dress code proposal for dinner. Then, Lasala spoke to Mr. Dey about it. Mr. Dey was strongly in favor of it and asked Mr. Yankus to seriously consider it. Therefore, Mr. Yankus decided to put it to a trial test for the winter term.

According to Mr. Yankus, this proposal was tried last spring but it failed because the dress code couldn’t be enforced. Once again, the proposal is only a trial. If the class dress code is abused by people wearing jeans, T-shirts, and sweats, there is a strong likelihood that this proposal will not be continued in the spring. If the dining hall becomes messy with students’ trays and trash, the deans are likely to take the privilege away.

After seeing the results of the new dinner dress code last Wednesday, Mr. Yankus seemed pleased with the results. He said, “I think it was worth it.” The kids also appreciated the dinner dress code for dinner. Said Lex Harris, a fifth form student council representative, “Golly,  think it’s swell!”


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