Pro School Uniforms Essay, Research Paper
Society’s apparel obsession has caused great distress for students in today’s society. Peer pressure, financial strain, and fears of not fitting in are just some of the aspects that play into the overall success a child has in school. In a world that touts freedom of expression the real freedom to learn may be found in the conformity of school uniforms.
The daily fashion fight starts bright and early every morning for students all across America. Imagine a typical morning that begins with a blood curdling scream, something like “get out of bed now, the bus will be here in three minutes!” The shriek is followed by the confusion of what day it is along with a cold temperature shock from a once toasty bed. Then add the trauma of finding a clean pair of socks and a shirt other than the one worn yesterday. With school uniforms this havoc in the morning could be lessened. If you already know what you have to wear, you can slip it on quickly, eliminating a time crunch and mental frustration.
A uniform also saves the aggravation that comes with keeping up with the “in” of fashion. As the season changes, so does fashion. Just when it seems you are caught up with the rest of your friends, and have new clothes, it is time to go to the store to buy clothes for the next season’s wardrobe. This would not be the case with a uniform policy. Uniforms stay the same in a school district and this would save parents a substantial amount of money in the long haul. A New York Based research firm found that households whose children wear uniforms spend an average of $104 on clothing, as opposed to $185 per child for those who don’t attend a school with a dress code (Dolliver 16).
Eliminating having to buy new clothing every season for growing kids is not only a financial relief, but a huge mental one as well. Not only do parents worry about their kids fitting in, but also so do the youngsters themselves. Every child is not as fortunate to have all the latest styles and brand of clothing, and the less privileged are left to deal with the fact they the don’t feel like they belong. By wearing uniforms, you would not be singled out as the girl who is less fortunate or the guy that wears all dark colors. You would get to know people for who they were. Everyone would have an equal chance at making friends. If everyone was wearing the same thing, it may possibly cut down on stealing because they wouldn’t be envious clothing and accessories.
As one can see equality is a major part of the school system. It can cause many distractions among students. Along with equality comes an easier way to learn. School uniforms would solve many problems and improve the learning process in schools nation wide. If the entire school were dressed alike they would feel like a whole, more like a team, instead of individuals under constant pressure to dress alike. Keith King of the University of Cincinnati who has published research on the effectiveness of dress codes says that overall, students in uniforms “felt more like a team.” That’s important, King says, because “the No. 1 protective factor against school violence is having a student feel connected to his school and that he fits in.” (Winger 72)
Another problem with wearing regular clothes is the possibility of an intruder entering the school. Looking through the halls, trying to decide who belongs and who doesn’t is nearly impossible. With expanding schools there are more and more students accumulating, which makes it hard to decide if each person belongs. In bigger schools, teachers don’t necessarily know every student. Administrators and faculty cannot always tell the difference from your everyday senior to you 24-year-old college graduate. If there was low security and someone wanted to sneak into the school, it would not be difficult. Wearing typical clothing would easily blend anyone in with the rest of the crowd. However, if each student were unified with the same clothing, an intruder would be spotted immediately, which would definitely increase the overall safety for students.
Some could argue that implanting school uniforms would stifle a child’s creative outlet to express who they are through clothing, shoes and decorative accessories, but schools are offering many options. Some schools stick with traditional plaids and navy blue, but many are now offering a variety in the dress code including polo shirts, chinos, and even capri pants (Wingert 73).
If some of these problems are eliminated with uniforms, school can have a more serious atmosphere for learning. Students would be able to focus on learning, which is the actual reason they are in school.
Dolliver, Mark. “It’s all the same to me.” Adweek 22 Feb. 1999: 16.
Wingert, Pat. “Uniforms rule.” Newsweek 4 Oct. 1999: 72-74.