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Author Topic: How strict should school uniform policies be?  (Read 6016 times)

Offline Duffield1

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How strict should school uniform policies be?
« on: 11 April, 2012, 09:58:41 AM »
You regularly read in the newspapers about how children are excluded from lessons based on what the school classes as 'inappropriate' hair styles, whether that be colour of hair, shaving patterns, etc.

My daughter is at an independent school with very strict rules on how hair should be - girls' hair has to be tied back with a plain red hair elastic or a plain red hair band, boys have to be neat and tidy with hair off the collar, and we regularly get reminders in the weekly newsletter that boys need to go and have a trim during half term to make sure they don't look like urchins.  It is quite draconian, but it is just the final part of a strict uniform policy - and the kids and parents understand and respect that - if we don't like it, we can always choose to withdraw our children.

How strict do you believe that schools should be about uniform policy? 

Offline antonymous

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #1 on: 11 April, 2012, 10:20:29 AM »
Two hours ago I was listening to the BBC World Service and there was an in depth report about the Texas educational system at Dallas, where kids who break the school rules, including uniform violations and unkempt appearance, are given a ticket ( in much the same way as speeding tickets are issued here), they are then arested by Police officers and hauled before a magistrate and fined. Staying away from school to avoid receiving such a ticket is no answer as school is compulsory up to 18 years of age and truancy is also subject to ticketing and criminalisation. Needless to say many (25%) of the the kids who enter the judicial system in this manner end up in jail  - or juvenile detention  as they call it. Currently there are 1300 naughty Dallas pupils locked up in one such place.

I'd say your daughter's got a cushy number.
So just make sure that hair band is red and not a shade of pink! Or else!
« Last Edit: 11 April, 2012, 10:22:48 AM by antonymous »
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Offline Hiheels

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #2 on: 11 April, 2012, 11:28:02 AM »
I suppose to a degree they have to be draconian, as with any rules there really isn't much, if any, scope for bending them as if X is acceptable even if not stated, then Y becomes so and so on until there aren't any rules at all.
However, I also think they should remember that, just as with work, there's life outside of school and I can see how they've got provision for girls that want longer hair - but what if they boys do too? They're not school boys for 24 hours so shouldn't there be some scope for their personal preferences?

Offline tecspec

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #3 on: 11 April, 2012, 11:30:51 AM »
When I was at High School (long time ago) girls wore gymslips or skirts when kneeling on the floor the hem had to be no more than 3 inches above the knee.
Socks had to be white and knee high, black lace up shoes.
Cardigans or sweaters had to be navy and V - neck. Ties had to be on show at all times.  White blouse.
Blazers had to have the school badge stitched to the breast pocket and scarves were not to be worn indoors.
BOys had to wear grey trousers with grey socks, black lace up shoes, Navy or grey V neck sweater and tie, white or grey shirt, the same rules as the girls for blazer and scaarves.
Girls hair was to be neat and tidy, tied back if long. Boys short and neat.
No jewellery for the boys and girls could wear ear studs. No necklaces or rings.

The rules were strictly enforced, on the walk out of daily assembly the teachers would line up and pull any pupil aside that broke the rules. A letter would be sent to the parents if it was something that could not be sorted there and then.

I think uniform is a good thing for schools to have. It ensures that even the less well off pupils are not in 'fashion' competition with better off pupils.
I can't understand why any parent would want to colour their childrens hair or put patterns in it. I remember one boy coming to school with a skinhead and he was sent home for having a non-regulation haircut.
;-)

Offline Duffield1

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #4 on: 11 April, 2012, 11:37:28 AM »
I can't understand why any parent would want to colour their childrens hair or put patterns in it. I remember one boy coming to school with a skinhead and he was sent home for having a non-regulation haircut.

I don't think it is the parents particularly wanting it any more, it is the kids that believe it is their right to do whatever they like. 

Offline siasl

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #5 on: 13 April, 2012, 11:27:07 AM »
Tricky - I grew up with uniforms until I was 18 and never particularly liked them. But, they serve a purpose.

In no particular order:
It makes it easier for teachers to identify pupils off-site - much easier to track a gaggle of squirming children than if they were in mufti
It gives the school a public face/identity - so well/mis behaved pupils will occasionally trigger a letter to the head (I've seen that happen on a couple of occasions).
Fosters a school persona/team spirit (possibly tenuous)
It reinforces the understanding that there are some basic rules in society that you should not mess with.

On the other hand, I do object to the profiteering that some uniform suppliers partake of. My daughters uniform can only come from one shop, and I feel that they sometimes gouge on price. Ditto, my school blazer was only available from one shop at a high price.

As to regulations on hair styles - again, I think it reflects on the school image so private schools have every right to add whatever rules they like on appearance as their reputation is their selling point.

Also, it's a slippery slope to draw a line on. The second you admit a partially shaven head and then you'll start getting weird designs to judge and then get you mired in Daily Mail articles on children's "basic rights". The (draconian) rules stated fall in line with KISS principles.

Offline antonymous

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #6 on: 18 April, 2012, 02:04:39 PM »
You all thought I was joking didnt you?
http://www.intelligentanswers.co.uk/index.php?topic=4619.msg24918#msg24918

"A girl of six has been handcuffed by police and thrown in a jail cell in the US after throwing a tantrum at school.

Kindergarten student Salecia Johnson, of Milledgeville, Georgia, is accused of throwing books and toys during the outburst."
By Gaby Leslie | Yahoo! News 18/4/12 1200
« Last Edit: 19 April, 2012, 04:58:17 PM by antonymous »
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Offline P-Kasso2

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #7 on: 19 April, 2012, 04:53:38 PM »
I don't think strict school uniforms are a class thing.

My school had a really strict uniform code. Imagine this...Us poor little buggers had to...


Buy and wear cravats and ridiculous straw boaters in Summer...

Buy and wear school caps with different coloured panels at the back denoting which of the eight different school houses we were in...

Buy and wear different coloured ties for every sport that we became 'school colours' in...

Buy and wear gowns when we were made up to house prefects...

Buy and wear even longer gowns with blue silk facings when we were made up to school prefects...


And this was in a COMPREHENSIVE SCHOOL in bleedin' Sarf Lund'n!

Not only that, the ONLY school outfitters where we were forced to buy these vastly expensive unwanted items was (wait for it) the shop owned by the headmaster's brother!

Needless to say I have avoided anything that requires a uniform ever since although I do agree that the sight of a well-turned group of uniformed school kids beats the sight of a bunch of scruffy hoodies.

It gives a sense of belonging that may well be vehemently resisted by the little oiks but will maybe only appreciated a lot in later life.

For the most part though I think that schools impose uniform dress codes for the same reason that the Army does...it psych's the kids into submission, turns them into cyphers and makes it far easier for the officer class (ie the teachers) to boss them about with the minimum of rebellion.

So, as well as school uniforms, maybe kids should all be given numbers instead of names?  whisl
« Last Edit: 19 April, 2012, 05:17:08 PM by P-Kasso2 »
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Offline angie828

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #8 on: 20 September, 2012, 09:37:20 PM »
I know growing up we never had uniforms.  My mother always said that it would have been easier to have because then she did not feel that we were competing with others in the school district.  I can understand her point of view, then no one would think that they were better than anyone else based on how they dressed.

Offline Rebus2666

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #9 on: 21 September, 2012, 04:18:49 PM »
I think there is a point, and the school you've mentioned to me seems to have approached it, when the order required of kids, because these are just kids remember, goes overboard. My school had uniforms, and those alone seem to me as far as I'd go. It gave a unity, no kids got bullied, everything looked very neat and clean. We even had several styles of dress to choose from. I don't know, making kids wear their hair a certain way doesn't really seem necessary to me. If you're going for a neat and respectable vibe, all you need is uniforms.

Offline Stephanie

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #10 on: 24 September, 2012, 10:02:38 PM »
I support school having strict policies. I live in an area where all the public schools require uniforms. Most of the parents support the policy. It is an economical way to pay for your children's wardrobe and cuts down on the pressure children and parents face when it comes to fashion and accessories.

I think it also prepares children for the workforce and the dress requirements they will have then. I've heard young people complain when faced with workplace dress codes after years of wearing whatever caught their attention.
Two roads diverged in a wood and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference   ~ Robert Frost

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #11 on: 18 November, 2013, 04:16:53 PM »
I support a strictly enforced uniform and/or dress code. Not just in schools, generally in life I think it makes for a good equal atmosphere and a sense of belonging.

Personally I attended a boarding school in the north of England in the late 1990s early 2000s. We didn't have a uniform but we had a dress code of blazer or sports jacket, smart trousers (chinos or similar, not jeans), a light blue or white shirt with a firm collar, and a tie. This was in force throughout the week and on Saturdays until 1pm (we had school on Saturday morning).

On Sundays though had to be in a suit, however, with a white shirt, tie, and polished black shoes. You had the option of swapping this for the standard blazer/jacket and tie from 4pm onwards. You also had to wear a suit on other occasions that were deemed "important", such as travelling to and from school on public transport, school trips (whether at the weekend or during the week!) and (this was unpopular) when your parents came to visit you at the weekends.

The only time casual clothing was allowed was Saturday afternoon and evening - and even then only if not watching and playing in school matches.

It was resented by us all at the time but to be honest it was excellent for discipline and gave us all a sense of equality and belonging. In fact, I remember the only time bullying etc because of clothes occured was when were were allowed to be in "casual" clothes on Saturday.

School holidays were long so we had plenty of times to kick back and enjoy standard teenage fashion when we weren't at school. But the dress code gave us all a sense of pride and taught us how to dress well and appropriately in adult well. I hope the tradition continues and it is a shame more school don't adopt this approach and instead insist on imposing awful tacky "uniforms" that the kids hate instead of allowing a bit of indivdualism and the ability to experiment within the context of "smart" clothing that a uniform allows.   
 

Hilbert Lin

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Re: How strict should school uniform policies be?
« Reply #12 on: 26 May, 2017, 07:14:48 AM »
I support a strictly enforced uniform and/or dress code. Not just in schools, generally in life I think it makes for a good equal atmosphere and a sense of belonging.

Personally I attended a boarding school in the north of England in the late 1990s early 2000s. We didn't have a uniform but we had a dress code of blazer or sports jacket, smart trousers (chinos or similar, not jeans), a light blue or white shirt with a firm collar, and a tie. This was in force throughout the week and on Saturdays until 1pm (we had school on Saturday morning).

On Sundays though had to be in a suit, however, with a white shirt, tie, and polished black shoes. You had the option of swapping this for the standard blazer/jacket and tie from 4pm onwards. You also had to wear a suit on other occasions that were deemed "important", such as travelling to and from school on public transport, school trips (whether at the weekend or during the week!) and (this was unpopular) when your parents came to visit you at the weekends.

The only time casual clothing was allowed was Saturday afternoon and evening - and even then only if not watching and playing in school matches.

It was resented by us all at the time but to be honest it was excellent for discipline and gave us all a sense of equality and belonging. In fact, I remember the only time bullying etc because of clothes occured was when were were allowed to be in "casual" clothes on Saturday.

School holidays were long so we had plenty of times to kick back and enjoy standard teenage fashion when we weren't at school. But the dress code gave us all a sense of pride and taught us how to dress well and appropriately in adult well. I hope the tradition continues and it is a shame more school don't adopt this approach and instead insist on imposing awful tacky "uniforms" that the kids hate instead of allowing a bit of indivdualism and the ability to experiment within the context of "smart" clothing that a uniform allows.   
 

I bet you spent most of your school time being dressed up, which I think is really great! Does your school have uniform inspection?