School Uniforms: Good Only for the Lower Grades Essay

3219 Words Mar 3rd, 2012 13 Pages
School Uniforms: Good Only for the Lower Grades

The debate over school uniforms has been ongoing for years throughout the United States. Those advocating for school uniforms believe that one’s individuality is not determined by the style of clothes a student wears and that uniforms will build a sense of community. They also believe that students will care more about their education if they are dressed as if they are heading off to work instead of off to play. The opposition for school uniforms feels that uniforms squelch the students’ individuality and therefore violate their First Amendment right. It is also believed by the opposition that uniforms will not stop the students from acting out in the classroom. Does requiring students
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The proponents would like to use school uniforms as a way to reduce distractions, violence, peer pressure and the like and help students focus. The detractors point out that school uniforms are only a visible band-aid covering far deeper problems and that unless those problems are also addressed, uniforms by themselves have been proven completely ineffective. The underlying concern of both sides of the argument is that our education system needs to find ways to accomplish its main goal, which is to educate.

While both sides are equally strident in their views, a consensus is possible. Many parents and educators believe uniforms to be effective and the formation of a policy allows parents to become more involved in their children’s education, while detractors are unconvinced of their effectiveness. Therefore: allow parents and children to opt-out of the program (“Not including this would cause a court to rule against your program…” (Kelly)), create a more ‘casual’ uniform, perhaps jeans and a knit shirt, restrict the program to the lower grades where the anecdotal evidence seems to support the policy and subsidize the program where necessary for lower-income families.

Works Cited

Brunsma, David L., and Kerry A. Rockquemore. "Effects of Student Uniforms on Attendence, Behavior Problems, Substance Abuse and Academic Achievement." Journal of Education Research. 92.1 (1998): 53-62. Print.

Kelly, Melissa.

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