School Uniforms versus No School Uniforms-Which One Should be Embraced
School Uniforms versus No School Uniforms is a debate that has been around for quite a while. Whether you hate or love school uniforms, these garments have some undisputable positive attributes. Experts such as professional educators and parents back this up for various reasons. However, some other parents and students believe that uniforms only make students look the same.
They suggest that uniformity downplays the religious, economic, social differences among students. In addition to covering the body from nakedness, they argue that dressing is a means of expression. So, should students wear school uniforms or not? You be the judge. Although uniforms are often associated with old-fashion and conservation, they change along with a society’s dress code.
History of School Uniforms
Although it’s difficult to trace the history of wearing school uniforms, there are a lot of influences that led to the adoption of school uniforms. According to most historians, school uniforms began in charity schools instead of public schools. The first standard dress in the education system took place in 1222 in England. This was when Archbishop of Canterbury gave instructions that students should wear a cappa clausa, robe-like outfit.
Modern school uniforms date back to the 16th Century United Kingdom when children who attended the Christ’s Hospital boarding school were mandated to wear blue cloaks that resembled the cassocks that were worn by the clergy. The charity school students also wore yellow stockings. This was in 1552. Up to today, the uniform is still being worn by the Christ’s Hospital pupils. This makes it one of the oldest school uniforms that still exists.
In later centuries, most people associated school uniforms with students of the upper class. For instance, it was until 1972 when Eton, one of the most prestigious schools in England, students stopped wearing top hats and tails to school. In the United States, parochial and private schools emulated England’s traditional use of school uniforms.
In general, uniforms in schools have been on the increase ever since. Research shows that the number of school uniforms increased from about 12% to 20 % between 2004 and 2015.
Why Are School Uniforms Good?
Experts and professional educators believe that school uniforms eliminate economic and social differences that exist in communities. This is because little economic and social distinction can be made if students wear the same outfit. When students don’t wear similar garments, it can be easy for other students and even teachers to spot those who come from communities with less socioeconomic advantages.
2. A Cheaper Option
Parents and guardians who are in support of school uniforms, argue that they save money since they don’t do a lot of shooing for school clothing. Some jeans cost more than $50, and for this same cost, a parent can buy two pairs of uniform jumpers, skirts, pants, modern school polos and much more. Moreover, these outfits can be worn for a year or two.
3. Easier Morning
If you know your everyday dress code, you will always spend less time to get ready for school. Rather than staring at your closet every morning trying to figure out what to wear, you are aware of the clothing that completes your morning routine. Some students, especially girls, can save up to one hour since they know how they will look the following day even before going to bed.
4. Increases Student Focus
If there are less flashy cloth in learning institutions, the potential of classroom distraction reduces. It’s important to note that some children’s attention can be drawn by stylish clothes, new pairs of shoes, and many more. A similar outfit can lead to higher grades because most students will only focus on their studies.
5. Promotes A Sense Of Safety
Students are more vulnerable to gang activities directly or indirectly. Similar clothing helps prevent students from joining or forming these groups. Moreover, it helps avoid any confrontations between groups of students. Studies also show that there are fewer incidents of school shootings when students wear a similar outfit.
6. Easy To Enforce School Uniform Policy
When there is a standard dress code, it’s easy for the school management or teachers to spot any violation of school uniform policy. When there is a uniform policy, the administration and parents don’t have to worry about too long, short, or baggy pants. This reduces the time spent in checking the student’s dress code.
7. Better Community Perspective
Studies show that educational professionals and parents view students who wear school uniforms as being academically proficient. Even some students think of their peers as being smart whenever they see them in similar clothing. This leads to a happy community that knows that their kids are more likely to score highly because of their dress code.
8. It Can Increase Student Attendance
Students can fain sickness if they know their dress code is less attractive compared to their friend’s clothing. Most kids are concerned about what others think about them. If they don’t keep up with the most current trends, they are considered old-fashioned. However, wearing the same outfit reduces these fears and increases student attendance.
9. Emphasizes On Discipline
Wearing the same outfit and following a dressing policy requires students to have some form of discipline. Parents also have to be disciplined to ensure their children meet these expectations. Whenever discipline is learned and practiced, it will be applied in other aspects of a student’s life.
Why Are School Uniforms Bad?
1. Reduces Individuality
Uniforms encourage students to think and act as a group instead of acting as an individual. As such, these students lose the ability to express their thoughts. They fear it might not go well with other students. Teens usually have a better social experience when they are able to express themselves through fashion freely.
2. Promotes Intolerance of Cultures
Most uniforms have been designed to represent a single culture or not to represent any culture at all. This brings about the intolerance of culture. For instance, bisexuals, lesbians, transgender, or gay students may be confused if they need to wear a uniform that represents their external gender or their inner sexual orientation.
3. New Uniforms Can Be Expensive Compared To Other Clothes
Families that live below or near the poverty line may find it hard to buy uniforms. At times, purchasing a polo school shirt for children can be very expensive. This cost can be cut, especially for families with many children, if there were to buy a $3 t-shirt.
4. Students Hate Them
School clothing are designed to replicate a student’s “Sunday best.” Uniform policies can dictate the kind of cloth a student wears inside and outside classrooms, which may require learners to take off their jackets and coats, even in cold weather. At times some students may feel uncomfortable because of the rigidity and tightness of school clothes. Some students may also have allergies, which will affect their ability to learn.
5. Missing Educational Opportunities
If students violate a dress code policy and they are sent home, they will miss valuable class lessons of that day. There is no valid reason to send a student out of school just because the administration, staff r teacher wants to enforce a policy. Moreover, parents who go to school to pick their kids miss out on their jobs, which leads to less pay.
6. Fashion Hindrance
For students who want to become fashionistas, wearing the same clothing suppresses their passion and freedom to express themselves. School uniform prevents them from wearing want they like. Some students also find it hard to iron their uniforms in order to remove crumples. This needs more time and even requires students to prepare a day before school.
7. An Intruder can easily blend in
An intruder can easily blend in by merely finding out a school uniform and following its policies. It may be hard for teachers and administrators to distinguish intruders from other students due to a similar dress code. It’s for this reason that learning institutions have an entry airlock, check-in procedure, and other security measures.
Traditionally, school uniforms are a part of the private and parochial learning process. However, this has been changing as more and more public schools in the United States are adopting similar dressing code. In many parts of the world, students are required to have the same outfit. However, other educational institutions don’t implement these rules due to a decision reached by parents and board members.
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