Uniform Guidelines

2014-15: Uniform Guidelines


Dear Families,


Thank you for your input at all of our Families as Partners events. We worked hard to reconcile all the different ideas and develop a dress code that does the following:


  1. Allows children to focus on finding their passions, building their skills, making friends, participating in the community, thinking deeply, generating ideas, and expressing themselves through the arts instead of worrying about what they are wearing or who is wearing what. We are trying to create an environment that encourages them to think about big ideas, play creatively, and make profound connections.
  2. Emphasizes the similarities among our diverse families, rather than highlight economic disparities.
  3. Provides developmentally-appropriate choice. You will see that the amount of choice increases as the children move into the next plane of development. We want them to have choice without feeling overwhelmed or needing to spend too much time making a simple decision. For example, this is why you that the number of available shirt colors increases each year.
  4. Encourages children to work and play comfortably without adjusting their clothing or worrying about whether their undergarments are showing. In a typical day, children will be working at tables and on the floor, cooking, gardening, running, jumping, climbing—the list goes on! This is why you see skorts as an option, but not skirts/dresses/jumpers for the younger children. Those options will be added in upper elementary.
  5. Gives families flexibility to purchase items at the stores of their choice, so they can stay within their own budgets.


We will implement the dress code available at this link for the 2014-15 school year. We will collect feedback from families about the current dress code and form a committee to make any revisions for the following school year. You can submit feedback at any time using the form found here: http://bit.ly/1nDxcXY


Frequently Asked Questions


“My child is at a daycare that lets him wear whatever he wants. How am I supposed to suddenly restrict his choices?”

  • The uniform can feel really restrictive in comparison to all of the options that are available at the store, but it actually gives children several different options on a daily basis. You might consider purchasing uniform options by yourself and bringing them home for your child to choose from. Or you might decide to shop online and pull up a couple different options for your child to choose from. Our hope is that children feel like they have several different choices on a daily basis (both among colors, as well as styles). If they feel frustrated that they can’t wear a particular favorite of theirs, you might say something like, “That’s not an option that is available for school, but you are more than welcome to put it on when you come home or on the weekends.”


“My child loves superheroes. Why can’t see have a backpack or lunch box with her favorite super hero?”

  • When young children are exposed to characters in the media, they can become very excited about them, and frequently thinking about the characters can limit their ability to play and think creatively. Children will have lots of time at home to play with characters; at school, we would live to give them the opportunity to explore more open-ended, self-directed, creative play and conversations.


“Why can’t my kindergartener wear a skirt or a dress to school?”

  • We want children to be able to work and play comfortably without constantly adjusting their clothing or worrying about whether their undergarments are showing. In a typical day, children will be working at tables and on the floor, cooking, gardening, running, jumping, climbing—the list goes on! Skorts offer the look of a skirt, without requiring an extra pair of shorts. We didn’t want to start worrying about setting up dresscode guidelines for shorts worn under dresses and skirts. Our goal is for all of us—children and staff alike—to not have to think about the dress code on a day-to-day basis. Dresses, skirts, and jumper options will be added in upper elementary when children are more aware of the relationship between their bodies and clothing and can make decisions that set them up to be able to play and work comfortably.


“Why did you choose white shirts for primary?!? It’s going to get so dirty!”

  • We wanted to offer a light-colored shirt option for primary children, since the Texas sun gets so hot. We opted for white over gray because we thought it would be easier to get stains out of.

Lottery Update

Hello, All!

What an incredibly exciting day! We have filled all 300 spots and have begun the slow process of calling every accepted family. Just because you didn’t receive a call today doesn’t mean you didn’t get a spot! It’s just an incredibly time consuming process. Meanwhile, we are also preparing to mail letters to families that were waitlisted.

If you receive an acceptance call or e-mail, please plan to stop by during our office hours to begin the enrollment process. We will be at the University Hills Library during the following times:

  • Tuesday, March 4 from 4:00pm-6:30pm
  • Wednesday, March 5 from 4:00pm-8:30pm
  • Thursday, March 6 from 12:00pm-8:30pm

Please plan to bring:

  • Child’s birth certificate
  • Child’s social security card (if available)
  • Immunization records
  • Parent ID
  • Proof of residency (utility bill or lease)
  • $200 deposit if you are not eligible for free pre-K (see document for more details)

We look forward to connecting with you in person soon!

Upcoming Information Sessions

Please join us to learn more about Magnolia Montessori For All!

  • Wednesday, 2/5 from noon-1pm at the Windsor Park Library
  • Saturday, 2/22 from 10am-4pm at Davis White Northeast District Park (stop by any time!)

Montessori Teacher Meet-up

Help shape Austin’s first public Montessori school! Come meet Magnolia Montessori For All founder Sara Cotner and hear about her plan to open a preK-3 through 8th grade public Montessori charter school in East Austin in the fall of 2014. Bring your ideas for what the ideal schedule would look like, the best ways to support teachers, and best practices from your schools (related to annual traditions, communicating with parents, field trips, extracurricular activities, etc.).

When: Sunday, April 15 @ 3:30 pm
Where: Thunderbird Cafe on Manor Road in East Austin
Who: Montessori teachers!

We are ecstatic to connect with Montessorians in Austin, and we hope to see you there! If you want to learn more about Magnolia Montessori For All before then, please check out our home page or about us page.