School Smocks: Iran

Figure 1.--r.

HBC believes tha Iranian elementary school children wore smocks, as was common in other Middle Eastern countries, but have few details. News reports from Iran in 2000 inducated that elementary school girls were being allowed to wear lighter-colored smocks rather than the dark smocks imstitued after the victory of the Islanic Recolution in 1979. HBC is unsure if boys still wear smocks in Iran.

The Iranian Goverment announced in 2000 that girls could swap their dark school uniforms for pinks, bright greens or light blues. This was another sign the nation was shedding its revolutionary shades. A directive to elementary schools allowing uniforms in brighter colours is meant to "create freshness, joy and hope" and to "preserve spiritual health" of girls, the Islamic Republic News Agency quoted an Education Ministry statement as saying. It was not clear if the permission extended to high school girls. Girls must wear the uniforms - manteaus, or loose smocks and headscarves - to school over their regular clothes to conform with the nation's Islamic rules and school uniform policies. Often, the uniforms are worn throughout the school day. President Mohammad Khatami, a reformist cleric, has been changing the dark image adopted by Iran since its 1979 Islamic revolution. The president made a fashion statement himself during an official visit to Germany this month, when he appeared for the first time in a cream-coloured clerical robe rather than a dark one.

Christopher Wagner

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Created: January 26, 2001
Last updated: January 26, 2001