Police, anticipating more demonstrations, patrolled the school yesterday and, at one point, dispersed about 25 students who said they had come from Anwatin Junior High School to support the suspended students.
Although the day passed without major incident, Superintendent Richard Green said order had not been completely restored at the school. "It is still unresolved in my view," he said.
Police Thursday arrested four students following a sit-in and demonstration at the school in which an estimated 300 students participated.
The arrests came less than a week after Principal Rachel Leonard sent a letter to parents that said "overly conspicuous or overly distracting" dress, including spiked hairdos and studded bracelets, would not be tolerated if it interfered with classes. She said she took the action after faculty complaints.
At a press conference yesterday, Leonard blamed the media for helping to incite the students. "You brought the cameras around," she said. "I guess I am upset." Green, who said there were allegations that the media provoked students, said the primary issue remained the dress code.
Eric Reichwald, who emerged from the school yesterday morning after being suspended, apologized for the incident. "It's right to suspend us... It turned into general chaos. We still think we were right for protesting. No one won."
Officials said the suspensions were given to students who actively participated in the demonstration or refused to return inside the school following the outbreak. Associate Superintendent George Haakenson said students who went home to escape the demonstration and confusion were not suspended.
"We are talking about those kids who persisted, who stayed around the building," Haakenson said.
He said many students were phoned late Thursday and told they were suspended. He said that by late yesterday, about 40 to 45 students had been suspended and that at least 150 other students were told to write essays on the results and effects of protests. The school will be closed next week for spring break.
"I think the whole situation was badly handled by the administration," said Alyce Nelson whose eighth-grade daughter, Michelle, was suspended, "They're still dealing with children and they're supposed to be adults."
Haakenson said that while Susan B. Anthony was the only school that had recently tried to more strictly define a dress policy he denied that the school had established a dress code.
"I don't know if barring something is a dress code," he said. "I don't want to call it a dress code .... I think those words are inflammatory. If I say you can't play your tuba in the math class, am I restricting music?"
School system policies require student dress to "conform to the requirements of law and not be disruptive to the educational process." Dress should conform to standards "generally accepted by the local community .... Unless some standard of apparel presents an obvious health or safety hazard to the student or others involved in the school's activities, students' dress and grooming is the responsibility of parents and students."
Individual schools may add further restrictions. Fundamental schools, for example, require parents and students to agree on a dress code that "is stricter than the overall policy. Susan B. Anthony, a two-year middle school, is not a fundamental school.
Green, who announced that a school meeting on the issue will be held April 9, said the dress code controversy was the first he could recall in the city in at least five years. "The students wanted to protest a policy but they did not expect it to turn into what they experienced," he said.
Mary Jane Smetanka contributed to this article.