The Mercer County Board of Education approved a revised dress and appearance policy. The policy establishes school colors—red (Pantone 185C), white, and royal blue (Pantone 286C)—and that all three colors must be incorporated in uniforms and approved by the athletic director, school principal and coach. Any individual, club, sports team or school group using school funds must follow board policy and procedure.
The policy also allows teams to wear alternate color uniforms for up to 10 percent of their total games in a given season. The purchase of alternate color uniforms is the responsibility of booster clubs and is not considered part of the district’s standard uniform rotation. Cheerleading, dance and band are not held to the specific guidelines of school colors as they fall under a different category for competition and performance standards.
Athletic Director Donald Wayne Smith took the board through the revisions made to the policy and answered questions. Smith said there are 19 sports that go through a four-year rotation of uniforms.
Board member Amber Franceschi questioned the policy of allowing alternative uniforms at 10 percent of games. Superintendent Jason Booher said it prevents boosters from going out and buying alternative uniforms so that players are never wearing school colors. All uniforms need to be approved prior to purchase, Booher said.
Board member Billy G. Montgomery asked about rotation among the 19 sports.
“When their rotation comes around, is that buying all colors?” Montgomery asked.
Smith said it is determined by the head coach.
“As long as it fits what we have in here,” Smith said. “Most of our uniforms have all three colors.”
Smith first brought the revised policy before the board in November. At that time, Montgomery said he raises cain when University of Kentucky teams wear black.
“It’s kind of what the kids want,” Smith said. “As far as board policy, no, we will not have black uniforms.”
“All they’re trying to get to is wearing a black uniform,” Montgomery said. He asked about possible restrictions of alternative colors.
“I don’t think we can do that,” board member Cliff Prewitt said, referring to colors like pink for breast cancer awareness.
“I like this,” Prewitt said of the revisions. “It’s a lot more concise and organized.”
The new policy also allows boosters to pay for uniforms that would have logos for former schools in Mercer County that were folded into the school district during mergers over the years.
“It would say Rose Hill Rams and it would be green and white,” said Instructional Technology Coach and Tennis Coach Jay Anderson. “It wouldn’t have any red, white and blue on it.”
Anyone wanting to use a different logo other than the previously approved graphics must submit the proposed logo and design to the board for approval prior to use. The logo must be previously approved by principal or the athletic director.
Franceschi moved to approve the revisions with the recommended changes, with Montgomery seconding.
“I was going to make the motion, Donald Wayne, she beat me to it,” Montgomery said.
He said the original proposal in November allowed had black uniforms for basketball.
“That is why I was against it,” Montgomery said. “10 percent, I’ll vote for it.” The motion passed unanimously.