Do you think uniforms help students to be disciplined and motivated? Pros and Cons of Uniforms

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Someone asked me that question the other day and I admit I wanted to think about it seriously.

Do you think uniforms help students to be disciplined and motivated?

There are pros and cons to uniforms.

One of the best Pros I can think of is that it makes the “clothes” playing field equal, even – no outrageous demands being put on parents for the clothes their children wear to school (nope – wait – they get you on the formal) {:>)   It helps eliminate the “brand” consciousness and the need for the competition of who’s got the latest, best, most expensive (once again this gets taken care of during the formal!).

One CON of school uniforms is that depending on the school being a public or private school – the uniforms can cost as much as a decent suit for an adult! The blazers for a local girl’s private school are costing more than $200.00 – the first one has to be purchased in 4th grade (when the child is quite small) and as the student grows the blazer has to be updated to a new one- this can represent nearly $600.00 in costs for the jacket alone!  Even in public schools the uniforms can become expensive if they have to be purchased from the Uniform Shop and not readily available in the retail stores where sales and price reductions are possible.

Another trick some of the private schools pull is having a summer and winter uniform – so the parents two opportunities each year to update their child’s uniforms!  Oh joy!  I can personally tell you how unsettling it is to have the $498.00+ bill presented for the Winter uniform and $398.00+ bill for the summer one.  Add to this the swimming suits, sports gear (yes they DO need a different uniform for hockey, baseball, netball/basketball, and on, hopefully the uniform shop has a “previously loved”  section

If this seems a bit much, I recommend speaking to the schools you are looking at for your child and ask the question… What are the uniform requirements throughout my child’s stay at the school.

Now, back to the initial question, do uniforms help the child stay disciplined and motivated?

Hard one to answer – in some environments taking away the need for expensive clothes and having all students in the same clothes can reduce the classroom chatter about what someone is wearing that day (new shoes,  designer jeans, etc.) but will not stop the chatter about shopping or what they bought on the weekend.

Students given free reign to wear whatever they want become more focused on what everyone is wearing rather than their studies. And the demands for more and more designer wear.

Another Pro would be that it gives the students of the school an identity – something they can be proud of.  That is also a great reason for the school to uphold strict standards of dress. Uniforms need to be checked, all the bits & pieces being worn properly. This can get the students used to a certain amount of personal responsibility – making sure they are neat and tidy each day – and therefor may instill a sense of pride and that may lead to a desire to achieve more int he classroom – which MAY lead to a more studious approach by the student! Note – I said MAY!

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