School Uniforms

Topics: High school, Education, Dress code Pages: 7 (1619 words) Published: December 4, 2014


School Uniforms: A Positive Learning Environment
Sarah Padilla
Reading Area Community College
COM 141
Fall 2014
Timothy Erdman

Table of Context
Abstract……………………………………………………………………………………3 Introduction………………………………………………………………………………..4 Discussion……………………………………………………………………………….4-6
Positive Learning Environment…………………………………………………4-5
Decreases Violence……………………………………………………………......5
Violation of Student Rights……………………………………………………….5
Student Confidence/Esteem……………………………………………………….6 Conclusion………………………………………………………………………………...6 Reference………………………………………………………………………………….7

Abstract
This paper focuses on the positive effects provided by the use of uniforms in the school environment. The goal of this research is to prove that while students’ First Amendment rights may become limited, the use of school uniforms can create a safe and secure environment that enhances the educational growth of students. By highlighting the benefits of a positive learning environment and correlating this environment with the use of uniforms, it can be proved that this policy is a necessity in public and private schools. These findings can further be used to eliminate any negative connotations related to the enforcement of school uniforms made by students, parents, and school staff.

Introduction:
The discussion over school uniforms has been a heated debate amongst administrators, staff, and students for decades. While common in private schools, uniforms are beginning to show up in public schools across the nation. Most students resist, which is why it is important to highlight the positives of enforcing a school uniform policy. While implementing a school uniform policy can be viewed as a violation of student rights, school uniforms create a positive learning environment and decrease school violence for students in public and private schools. Currently, no state legislature or state department of education mandates the use of student uniforms or specific dress codes. However, research has identified 21 states and the District of Columbia that have passed policies authorizing districts or schools to require uniforms (Madrid and Garcia, 1999). According to the U.S. Department of Education’s Manual on School Uniforms, many large public school systems, including Baltimore, Cincinnati, Dayton, Detroit, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Miami, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New Orleans, Phoenix, Seattle and St. Louis, have schools with either voluntary or mandatory uniform policies, mostly in elementary and middle schools (Madrid and Garcia, 1999). In May 2000, the Philadelphia Board of Education became the first large city board to require school uniforms in all grades in the city’s 259 public schools, which is approximately 200,000 students (Madrid and Garcia 1999). The use of school uniforms in public schools is becoming a more prominent tool in providing a learning environment for students of all ages. Discussion:

Providing a positive learning environment is one of the key components necessary in reaching the educational goals of any school. A positive learning environment exists when all students feel comfortable, wanted, valued, accepted, and secure in a system where they can communicate with caring people that they trust. The general attitude of the school affects everyone associated with the school including students, staff, parents, and the community. A positive learning environment is simply the belief system that underlies the operation of a school, creating a climate conducive to education (Doctor, 1997). Social pressures, especially those dealing with what kids are wearing, can commonly interrupt this learning environment. School administrators, often with parent and student support, argue that students have grown so fashion conscious that they are distracted from their studies with thoughts about their appearance (Gullatt, 1999). These...

References: Bomba, A. K., Elmore, P. A., Tidwell, D. K., & West, C. K. (1999). Attitudes of Parents about School Uniforms. Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences, 91(2), 92-96.
Brendtro, L., M. Brokenleg, and S. Van Bockern. Reclaiming Youth at Risk: Our Hope for the Future. Copyright 1990 by the National Educational Service, 304 West Kirkwood Avenue, Bloomington, IN 47404, 800-733-6786, www.nesonline.com.
Brunsma, D. L., & Rockquemore K. A. (2003). Statistics, Sound Bites, and School Uniforms: A Reply to Bodine. The Journal of Educational Research, 97(2), 72-77.
Doctor, Susan. (1997). Environmental Checklist. Positive School Climate, Section 3. http://www.edu.gov.mb.ca/k12/specedu/beh/pdf/3.pdf.
Gullatt, D. E. (1999). Rationales and Strategies for Amending the School Dress Code to Accommodate Student Uniforms. American Secondary Education, 27(4). 39-47.
LaPoint, V., Alleyne, S. I., Mitchell, H. W., & Lee, J. (2003). Attitudes of Youth of Color on Student Dress and Uniforms: A Case of Commercialism in Schools. The Journal of Negro Education, 72(4), 406-416.
Madrid, Max J. and Garcia, Elizabeth A. (1999). Student Dress Codes: Constitutional Requirements and Policy Suggestions. Modrall, Sperling, Roehl, Harris & Sisk, P.A.
Workman, J. E., & Freeburg B. W. (2006). Safety and Security in a School Environment: The Role of Dress Code Policies. Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences 98(2), 19-24.
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