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Making School Uniforms Compulsory: A Debate

By darkslime1 Sep 24, 2006 433 Words
The wearing of uniform in schools is a controversial topic in our society, and is constantly undergoing debate. Some people say that wearing school uniform would save parents' money, as there would not be competition between students for the trendiest clothes (which also raises social problems). But on the other hand, children need their own clothes anyway; to wear on weekends and when they go out with their friends, and school uniform is often very expensive. The main social con that emerges from wearing own clothes to school is bullying that may occur due to one person's fashion sense not being up to scratch. But then again, one might argue that people are going to wear their own clothes, eg: on mufti days and school trips, and so bullying for fashion would take place anyway.

Uniform doesn't give children a sense of individuality, and suppresses them of their own identity. The way they dress and present themselves is essential to their upbringing, as they learn things about themselves and are in different social groups, and they cannot be branded into a social group if they do not make a statement about themselves by the way they dress – in the words of an English teacher residing in Kent, uniform "depersonalise[s] them".

It is a waste of time (as well as money) for teachers and other staff to check that pupils are wearing the appropriate uniform, but on the other hand, it would save the students themselves time every morning if they wore uniform, as they would not have to worry and ponder over what they were going to wear to school. It would also create unnecessary stress upon the students to impress their peers by the clothes they wore. It could even save children their embarrassment if they could not always afford to buy the new fashion fad.

Schools and higher authorities argue that school uniform keeps children in order, and that it brings the community closer, but if there are problems with children misbehaving, there should be a method similar to sending them off to boot camp to teach them a lesson. Also, what is the point of "bringing the community together" if the individuals themselves are not collected?

My conclusion is that, rather than forbidding own clothes and forcing people to wear a particular uniform, the children should be educated in the ways of dressing appropriately, and light, liberal rules should be placed upon the wearing of clothes, eg: not wearing mini skirts. Pupils should be encouraged to dress sensibly, and led in the right direction, not shoved.

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