Like Augusta’s Cony High School, high schools in Waterville and Pittsfield also set firm rules about what graduating students may wear at commencement.

At Waterville Senior High School’s graduations, students may not decorate their gowns or mortarboards; but they may wear pins, jewelry or boutonnieres under their gowns if they wish, Principal Don Reiter said Friday.

“The only thing we allow outside the robe are awards, honors and medals that have been received through the school,” Reiter said.

Examples of allowed uses are honor cords for those who have an average of 85 or above, National Honor Society sashes or Board of Education awards, according to Reiter.

The philosophy behind the protocol is that graduation is a dignified event and schools want graduates to look dignified and be consistent in appearance, Reiter said.

Asked whether a senior would be allowed to wear a military-related item outside his or her robe, Reiter said: “It has never come up, but I don’t think we would. We’ve never had that request.”


At Maine Central Institute, the school enforces a dress code throughout the school year and expects students to exceed the rule during graduation, John Dean, director of student affairs of the Pittsfield school, said Friday.

The dress code requires students to wear collared shirts and dress pants or skirts for the girls.

Dean also said students would be not allowed to wear anything considered flamboyant or distracting enough to take away attention from the graduation ceremony.

Amy Calder — 861-9247
[email protected]

Kaitlin Schroeder — 861-9252
[email protected]

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