Disadvantages Of School Uniforms Essay Examples
Many agree that educational opportunities should be available to every child. No matter what their gender or socioeconomic status may be, children deserve every chance to succeed. The benefit of requiring school uniforms in a learning environment is that it reflects this equality. Instead of having children focus on the brands they wear or the fashion they can afford to create cliques, they can focus on their learning environment instead.
The disadvantage of requiring school uniforms is that it puts a cost on parents, guardians, and school districts that is often considered to be unnecessary. Not only do the students need “regular” clothes, but there must also be “school” clothes. Even with subsidies and discounts, the cost of one school uniform could be $20-$50. Here are some of the additional school uniforms pros and cons to consider as well.
What Are the Pros of School Uniforms?
1. There is no pressure on the student to decide what they should wear each day.
Because a school uniform limits the options a student has for clothing, there is less pressure to get through the morning routine. This often allows students to sleep a bit more because less time is required to get ready. Many school uniform policies still allow for individual taste, allowing for different colors or outfits, such as the inclusion of skorts or jumpers in addition to pants.
2. The costs of uniforms can be managed.
Although the cost of a uniform can be difficult on some families, it can often be managed. Many schools which require one specific daily uniform can purchase clothing in bulk, saving money for disadvantaged families. PTA buy-back programs, fundraisers, crowdfunding, and community supports are often in place to help with the costs as well.
3. Student attendance is better in schools with uniform policies.
When there is a mandatory school uniform code in place, statistics show that student attendance rises. This is because classrooms become more disciplined and orderly, allowing students to evaluate themselves instead of evaluating how they compare to their peers. The uniformity that is created lessens tensions, bullying, and violence that can occur in schools, which improves attendance.
4. It becomes easier to identify trespassers.
When students are required to follow a specific dress code, it becomes much easier to identify people who may not be allowed on campus. If an intruder is wearing something different that the school uniform, they stick out like a sore thumb when surrounded by students and teachers who are following the dress code.
5. It’s easier to find children when a class is off-campus.
If a class is on a field trip, then it becomes easier for teachers and school administrators to quickly identify the children who are with the group. It’s also a useful tool to locate children that may leave a school campus without permission for some reason. This lessens the risk of having a child go missing.
6. School uniforms create an automatic age identification.
School uniforms automatically identify children as being a student. This is useful for older students who may be trying to take advantage of them in some way. It is more difficult to serve minors alcohol or allow them to purchase cigarettes when they are wearing a school uniform.
7. They can be used as a method of discipline.
Many teachers have “challenging” children in their classrooms. There is often a lack of discipline at home, which means a child from such an environment will struggle to independently follow rules, guidelines, and expectations. Having a school uniform policy with strict rules gives teachers and administrators an opportunity to begin teaching the discipline these students will need later on in life. Having a shirt untucked creates a teaching opportunity.
8. It provides a sense of self-esteem.
Adults often dress up in some way to go to work every day. Even if the environment is casual, adults tend to put on their best outfits. They do so because they want to feel confident and leave a positive first impression to others. It is a boost to the self-esteem. School uniforms do the same thing for students, helping them to feel like a “professional” just like their parents or guardians.
9. Uniforms limit family in-fighting when it comes to school clothes.
The summer surge for new school clothes can be intense. Favorite characters, football jerseys, and designer jeans can become arguments within families very quickly. School uniforms lay out a set of rigid expectations that everyone must follow, which means the shopping process becomes pretty simple and straightforward.
10. Optional items can allow students to still express themselves.
Allowing students to wear jewelry, hair ties, and other optional items can still offer students a chance to express their individuality.
What Are the Cons of School Uniforms?
1. It may lessen competition and teasing, but it doesn’t eliminate it.
There are several top brands that produce school uniforms today. These brands, when identified, can show off the socioeconomic status of a student even if their outward appearance looks the same as everyone else. Schools can put in a policy to limit branding on the clothing, but kids still know if someone is wearing something new from Volcom or French Toast instead of a $1 recycled hand-me-down from the PTA.
2. School uniforms are almost always an annual cost.
Most children need 3-5 different school uniforms in order to make it through the week. Because kids will be kids, you can expect to be replacing at least one pair of pants that were torn at the knees during the year, as well as a paint-splattered uniform shirt or two. Additional shoes may also be required, which is another added cost. This means an added expense that some families may feel is completely unnecessary.
3. It can give a specific school a bad reputation.
When students are caught getting into trouble while wearing a specific uniform from a school, then the reputation of that student becomes the reputation of that school. If there are enough incidents that involve students from the same school, parents may opt out of sending their child there, taking advantage of school waiver or voucher programs instead.
4. In an effort to create equality, school uniforms can create segregation.
There can be a lot of politics involved in the creation of a school uniform policy. Girls might be allowed to wear skirts, but boys might be required to wear pants only. On the other hand, boys might be required to wear ties and girls might not be required to wear anything around the neck. This creates a difference in gender equality in the minds of some students and parents, which eliminates the benefits of “sameness” that a school uniform policy attempts to make in the first place.
5. It eliminates a form of student individuality.
Students who wear school uniforms may be more likely to pursue an education that is freer from peer pressure, but it also eliminates one form of their identity. It is difficult to express your individuality through fashion when you are forced to wear the same thing as everyone else is wearing to school every day.
6. Most kids hate wearing school uniforms.
If you ask the average child who attends a school that requires a uniform to be worn, you’ll receive statements like this. “I don’t like it because I have to wear the same thing every day.” Or “You really can’t do anything for yourself when wearing your uniform.” It becomes even worse when students are required to follow a specific uniform code, but their teachers can wear whatever they want to wear in the classroom. “Why do I need to wear a uniform when my teacher does not?”
7. School uniforms often look pretty lousy.
Many school uniforms involve stripes, bright colors, and school branding in some way. They’re often made from canvas materials that are designed to be tough, but don’t feel great to wear. Most kids are not going to want to wear their school uniform clothing unless they are going to school. They get home, change into “regular” clothes, and then go on with their day.
8. Kids still get teased when they wear school uniforms.
This is especially true in school districts where only one or two schools out of several require a uniform code. The goal of the uniform might be to reduce teasing and this might happen on school grounds, but once the kids leave school for the day, those who don’t need to wear uniforms will often tease those who do need to wear them.
These school uniforms pros and cons show that when implemented with compassion and a lack of politics, it can potentially provide an environment of equality that allows a student to focus on their studies instead of fashion. On the other hand, it is the kids who need to wear these uniforms on a daily basis and most of them, if honest, will say that they hate wearing them. That has to count for something too.
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Ask any school child what the pros of a school uniform are and they'll likely greet you with blank stares. If you think back to when you were a child you'll remember that most of us hated wearing a school uniform. However while it might not be entirely popular among the children, it can nevertheless have many positive benefits and if you think back to your time in school objectively now, then you can probably appreciate that fact.
For parents, teachers or governors trying to decide on their viewpoint of school uniforms it can be hard to think of it objectively and to think of all the different strengths and weaknesses they poise. Read on then and learn some of the plus and minus points about the controversial school uniform.
It helps you to find children: If a school is on a trip, or if a child runs away, a school uniform can help teachers to quickly identify children from their school and so prevent them from getting lost. This is a very useful ability for teachers and if it means fewer children going missing it's of course a good thing.
It prevents competition and teasing: When children wear their own clothes into school, this then becomes a time for them to judge each other. Some children will be more mature than others, some will have better dress sense, and some will have more money at their disposal. What you don't want is some children turning up in fashionable new clothes and bullying the ones in their hand-me-downs who will inevitably feel embarrassed as a result. With a school uniform everyone is the same, thus no one can argue this point. Likewise wearing home clothes can show affiliation � to sports teams, to TV series, or to bands � and this can then cause arguments between the 'rival' teams.
It can enforce a positive attitude: In a work place we dress smartly even though there's normally no uniform in office jobs, and even the self employed are advised to dress as though they were going into an office. The reason for this is that it can make you feel professional, and that that in turn can make you produce a better quality of work. The same is true of school children and if they are in shirts they will feel more like little workers and less like football fans.
It can teach discipline: Though many jobs do not require a uniform, others do. If you children are going to grow up to become nurses or checkout assistants then they may as well get used now to putting on the same uniform day in and out.
It shows their age: At the end of the day you want people to know that your children are children. This prevents people from chatting them up or serving them alcohol. By putting them in school uniforms the older looking children then can't pretend to be older than they are.
It can be used as an excuse: If a child is misbehaving and needs to be put in line, it can sometimes be difficult for a teacher to find a reason. By telling them off for having their shirt un-tucked though you have a legitimate reason. This is often why there are dress codes in clubs (though some parents would undoubtedly argue this was a bad reason to wear a uniform).
They're expensive for parents: Those parents who would have sent their children to school in old hand-me-downs and knitted jumpers may not be as relieved about the uniform as you may think, as it will mean they have to fork out for expensive school uniforms time and again in order to pay for their children's education. They will also need several versions of the same outfit as their children will have to wear them five days a week. This is on top of the clothes they already had to wear. They may well end up still wearing hand-me-downs from older siblings, or faded clothes from the charity shop too.
They can give the school a bad name: If the children of a school are out causing trouble wearing the uniform from a school, it can reflect badly on that school and result in fewer parents wanting to send their children there.
It can cause controversy: Someone has to design the uniform and someone has to choose what it consists of. Rules like 'girls wear skirts' can be perceived as pervy or sexist, while girls not being allowed to wear skirts can upset a lot of the girls. Likewise ties will be seen as a point of controversy (again is there gender equality here?) and every time there' a redesign parents and pupils alike will likely be angry. By letting children wear their own clothes you can avoid all of the politics involved here.
They can stifle individuality: Some people say that school uniforms are good for creating a sense of authority and discipline in children, whereas other parents would argue this is undesirable and they would rather their children were more creative and more liberal. At the same time they might feel that it takes away a way for children to express themselves and be more creative. It could be seen as stifling their creativity and independence to get them more willing to work for the 'man' in later life. Whether or not this is a good thing is entirely a matter of perspective.
Children don't like them: At the end of the day children would all love to wear their own uniforms. It would make children want to come to that school and it would make them a lot more likely to tow the line in other ways. Other schools would think that the children from yours were the 'cool' ones and it would generally be a great gift to the children. They're the ones who have to wear the things day in day out... so this has got to be worth something.
They look bad: School uniforms by and large are ugly to look at and usually involve black and yellow stripes, mucus green jumpers and uncomfortable materials. It's no wonder the children don't like wearing them... And this fact can make them teased by other children.
So there is no easy answer about whether children should or shouldn't wear uniforms and really it comes down to your own philosophies. At the end of the day though it's possible to make school uniforms a lot more pleasant than they are currently and there's no reason for them to be quite so bad to look at. Meanwhile it's also possible to find a compromise � such as making children wear a certain hat, or wear a tie and shirt but letting them choose them. Even just saying they have to wear a red jumper. If you are in charge of uniforms at your school then, maybe try thinking outside the box and ending the age old debate? Perhaps if you are little creative then you can satisfy both camps to at least some degree.
Related Articles And Other Topics
- Comment #1 (Posted by Kailey)
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This is very helpful, thank you.
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when was this article published? its great
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This article was absolutely terrible I mean seriously. "They look Bad" "Children Don't Like them" really utter disgrace is all I have to say :(
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- Comment #10 (Posted by an unknown user)
Not all school uniforms are expensive. Also, how can students tease other students wearing ugly uniforms if they're all wearing the same uniforms? And also, when you mention that it causes controversy, why not have gender neutral uniforms? Or maybe give girls optional skirts, and boys optional ties.
- Comment #11 (Posted by an unknown user)
This is just AMAZING, one of the best out there.
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This is a great article, I did hate then when I went to school. :) Post this on Facebook!
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"They look bad"
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Helpful for school projects.
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The article was great but all I need now is when it was made? The date of this?
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These are very good reasons!
- Comment #24 (Posted by an unknown user)
- Comment #25 (Posted by an unknown user)
The description of the uniforms seems rather silly. As if they all are alike. And where are you getting the black and yellow stripes? Most uniforms I have seen are navy.
- Comment #26 (Posted by an unknown user)
- Comment #27 (Posted by mike)
- Comment #28 (Posted by Hope Davis)
Great pros. Helped my researching a lot!!!
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Not all uniforms are expensive and they are all different but kids should have their opinion on things.
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Very good source of information for my research paper, thank you very much for going into detail about every pros and cons you picked.
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Good article. We are writing an argumentative essay in in class about school uniforms and this was good research.
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I liked this article...
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I like the cons, they are really helping me on my speech/debate thing that I have. Thanks. :)
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- Comment #51 (Posted by an unknown user)
Why is it that I've seen the reason "Children Don't Like Them" on every article I have read so far? That's the most idi*tic reason I've ever heard.
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I am doing a one on one debate in school about uniforms and this article not only helped me with my reasoning, but gave me some great insight on what my opponent will say!
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