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~Sulin Phat School Uniforms and You
Let's face the music, children and teenagers are growing up much faster than anyone had expected. Their peers, family, home, music, and television are all influencing them on how they behave and dress. The numerous ways students dress can reflect countless of messages such as the latest fashion trend, hand-me-downs, whatever is comfortable, or violence. I remember when I was in middle school. I did not wear the cutest clothes or was with the current fashion trend and was often left out when my friends were talking about clothes. I felt like I did not belong, but I did not want to buy expensive clothing just to feel included by my friends. Even though students' individuality is important to express one's self, uniforms should be adopted in some public schools because it lowers disciplinary referrals and helps students focus on learning. SEE BELOW (after edits)
I remember when I was in middle school. I did not wear the cutest clothes or was with the current fashion trend and was often left out when my friends were talking about clothes. I felt like I did not belong, but I did not want to buy expensive clothing just to feel included by my friends. Even though students' individuality is important to express one's self, uniforms should be adopted in some public schools because they lowers disciplinary referrals and helps students focus on learning.
Many students of public schools believe that school uniforms should not be introduced[/ because it is restraining people's freedom of expression and does not create diversity. One example how uniforms restrict learners are that "without the outlet of expression in their clothes, students may turn to inappropriate hair styles, jewelry, or makeup" (Public School Uniforms par. 10). So by restricting students of their clothing choice, they will still find a way to show their personality in their hair, jewelry, and hairstyles. As stated by the Public School Review, under the First Amendment, it argues that uniforms stifle children who feel robbed of their individualism. In addition uniforms create a false sense of security. According to Rashida Khilawala, "if the student gets used to being respected for their mind and not looks, the "outside world" could come as quite a surprise to them"(Khilawala par. 5). Even if uniforms decrease violence and everyone is treated equal, the outside world does not run as orderly and smoothly as it would in a school. Theses are some facts as to why; many children, teens, and parents are against uniforms in public schools.
While a uniform can get boring with the same clothes and same color every day, uniforms have proven to lower hostility in many schools. The first example clarifies how "uniforms have reduced tardiness, skipped classes, suspensions, and discipline referrals" (Public School Uniforms par. 6). As confirmed by the Public School Review, in the Long Beach school district within one year of launching uniforms, fights and muggings had seriously dwindled by fifty percent. While committed sexual offenses were massively diminished as well by a vast seventy-four percent. The second example demonstrates how another school has followed the footsteps of the Long Beach school district. As researched by the Public School Review "at Ruffner Middle School in Norfolk, discipline referrals decreased by forty-two percent once uniforms were enforced"(Public School Uniforms par. 2). This clearly proves how uniforms have not only decreased violence in one school, but another as well. Equally important, uniforms reduce violence by quickly identifying outsiders who enters a school. The intruder would be spotted immediately, disposing a potential threat to students. Wrapping it up, you are now able to understand by the hard-core proof of how uniforms have declined brutality.
In addition to uniforms lowering disciplinary referrals, they also help students focus on learning. The first example shows how students' clothing distracts learning because teenagers especially, care too much on how others see them. As stated by writer Kristin Holtz, "... students wear shirts that comment on reasons not to do homework, may be associated with gang colors and symbols or expose too much skin"(Holtz par. 14). Besides, if uniforms were enforced, students would not be distracted on how they look all the time. As confirmed by Kristin Holtz, "Standardized shirts would put kids on a level playing field while eliminating visible boxer shorts, bare midriffs and low necklines" (Holtz par.9). By removing distracting fashion, test scores would improve greatly and it would also help the students by clarifying to teachers on the students who need more help. Furthermore, uniforms improve students' focus in learning by developing a sense of ambassadorship and loyalty to the school, and build team spirit (Khilawala par. 3). Without off-putting garments, students start to care about the school more and are definitely more positive thinkers. Overall, you can now understand how uniforms help students' focus on learning.
All in all, while children believe that the school is trying to control their freedom of speech by enforcing uniforms, a school is not a fashion show. It is there to educate children and help them get into a college and a worthwhile future career. If only I had uniforms when I was in middle school, I could have learned what was more important than expensive and trendy clothing. In the words of Kristin Holtz of the Shakopee Valley News to students everywhere, "We want them to show their individuality with how involved they are in school, how well they work with their peers, with their teachers, what they do in the classroom and not how they look outside the classroom."
Holtz, Kristin. "Dress Code Plan: T-Shirt Standard For All." Shakopee Valley News. 5 March 2010.
"Public School Uniforms: The Pros and Cons for Your Child." Public School Review. 3 March 2010
Khilawala, Rashida. "School Uniforms Pros and Cons." Buzzle. 25 March 2010