School Uniforms

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To many people’s surprise and dismay the idea of school uniforms, which have become perceived as old fashioned, is being reintroduced into school systems around the country. Some say that school uniforms allow students to express themselves in other ways than their attire, they reduce violence among students, and they teach them how to dress neatly. However, studies have shown that school uniforms instead of allowing kids to express themselves it takes away individuality, and instead of reducing violence it causes students to lash out in rebellion against educators for being made to participate in such a strict dress code, and rather than teaching them to dress neatly it teaches them to conform to avoid conflict. Stripping students of their ability to freely express themselves has been one of the main concerns of uniforms. Whether students are made to wear uniforms or not they will still be judged on a part of their physical appearance, such as their height, skin color, weight, hair, teeth, shoes, jewelry, and the list can go on. So why must our kids be made to wear something that isn’t helping them. It takes away their individuality in the only way that young adults initially know how to express it, through what they wear. David L. Hudson Jr. a First Amendment scholar argues that, students could become alienated if school officials close off one of their few avenues of self-identification and expression. Some who are opposed to not having school uniforms think that kids can still express themselves through other ways but why should we limit the ways that our youth is able to express who they are. Jacquelynne S. Eccles, Ph.D., is professor of psychology, education, and women’s studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Dr. Eccles says, “The years between 6 and 14—middle childhood and early adolescence—are a time of important developmental advances that establish children’s sense of identity. During these years, children make strides toward adulthood by...
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