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School Uniform Issues

Discussion in 'Education news' started by TheOracleAtDelphi, Sep 5, 2019.

  1. TheOracleAtDelphi

    TheOracleAtDelphi Established commenter

    Every year, we tend to get a crop of stories about children sent home or put in isolation/internal exclusion for not following school uniform rules.

    This https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-49592200 is the latest story I've seen and concerns 'too short trousers'. I was genuinely intrigued because the school appears to be suggesting that this is quite a common rule - is it? I mainly work in primary schools these days so I'm probably wildly out of step with teenage fashion trends but when I was in secondary, too short trousers were generally a consequence of having grown and if anything pupils tended to 'slightly embarrassed' rather than 'cool dude' or fashionista.

    I suppose the solution is to buy trousers long and put a hem in which can be let down later but I was more curious as to whether you had such rules at your school?
  2. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I would anticipate the crease from a let down hem being social death in many parts of the school community.
    I guess schools are trying to avoid significantly short trousers - the sort I believe are named pedal pushers, that I call Capri pants.
    It's that fine line between common sense, strictness and the desire of kids to push back on the boundaries.
  3. --Badger--

    --Badger-- Occasional commenter

  4. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

  5. Corvuscorax

    Corvuscorax Star commenter

    we have a rule about staff in too short trousers
  6. Dodros

    Dodros Star commenter

    When I see the subject of "school uniform" cropping up here over and over again, I really wish more educational professionals working in England requested the opportunity to see what happens in continental European schools when it comes to the way staff and students dress. I spent a year as an English Language Assistant in a French secondary school during the late 1960s and the absence of school uniform had no perceptible adverse impact on learning or conduct. The same was true of the German schools I've visited. Why do we beat ourselves up over this in the UK for the sake of culture and tradition?
    neddyfonk, agathamorse, JL48 and 4 others like this.
  7. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    Likewise the USA
    neddyfonk, lizziescat and agathamorse like this.
  8. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Some of the stories I've been reading recently sound more like a desire for control and hierarchy reinforcement rather than a sensible smart uniform to quietly build team spirit and avoid early morning arguments at home.
    neddyfonk, strawbs and colpee like this.
  9. TheOracleAtDelphi

    TheOracleAtDelphi Established commenter

    I'm sure you're right phlogiston (I've certainly heard past stories of bullying re hem lines in the days when it was more common) but I'm not really sure what the alternative(s) could be given the very rapid growth rate some young people experience in the teen years and the rather bizarre uniform rules.

    Regarding the non-gendered uniforms - the school I myself attended banned skirts many years ago (in fact they went from girls not being allowed to wear trousers - when I was there - to not allowing skirts in about ten years). Even though it didn't effect me directly having been long gone by then I was really annoyed by it - I've never been that keen on rules which punish everybody in this case because a minority of girls think flashing your knickers is a good look. I know I am weird about the feel of fabrics/clothes and it was a brilliant school and I received an excellent education there but I would have been deeply miserable about having to wear trousers and even more self-conscious about my body than I already was.
  10. TheOracleAtDelphi

    TheOracleAtDelphi Established commenter

    P.S. Dodros - I remember our MFL exchanges and seeing the head teacher of our partner school in jeans - it was a bit of a contrast to the suits and ties of our head at home!

    The thing I most remember about them was that all the young people seemed to wear much the same thing - jeans, a jumper, shirt or t-shirt dependent upon the weather and - for the girls - a scarf (it was the nineties). I do wonder whether people who grew up in that environment would tell how expensive or otherwise the clothes were.
    phlogiston and Dodros like this.
  11. agenthenry69

    agenthenry69 New commenter

    School Uniform will always be an issue. It's a shame because it should be as simple as saying "this is your uniform. When you leave the school and start your career, you may be asked to wear a uniform too, so this isn't out of the ordinary."
  12. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    There are many jobs which don't require a uniform, and no-one is forced to apply to one that does, unlike going to school...so your analogy doesn't really work!
  13. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    I've never understood this argument. When you're an adult lots of things are different but schools don't feel the need to force their pupils to practice them so that they're 'ready'. Maybe only the pupils planning to go into those types of jobs should wear normal type uniform. The ones who want to work in a laid back office could wear what they like, the intended plumbers could wear overalls. Any planning a career as a classical performer could wear their concert blacks. I rarely wear anything that wouldn't be suitable for seeing to the chickens so that would be me. People are actually adaptable and can adjust to new situations. School wear should be right for school, not some kind of misplaced practice for a work place that often no longer has any interest in what employees wear.
    agathamorse likes this.
  14. Incommunicado

    Incommunicado Occasional commenter

    When I hear about these uniform issues I always wonder ... if the school is prepared to crack down severely, with an exclusion etc., on a pupil who arrives wearing, say, the wrong coloured shirt, what do they then do to the pupil who tells a teacher to “f*** off!” ?
    Staff would prefer to teach a well-behaved class dressed as Goths than a group of immaculately dressed yobs.
  15. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Daughter's school specify the minimum circumference at the trouser hem, and that they should touch their ("polishable") shoes. (They once sent out letters in July about too-short trousers. I've not heard that they've done it since - I suspect the parents involved will have told them they had no intention of replacing them until September.)
  16. Laphroig

    Laphroig Lead commenter

    There are many issues about dress codes in US schools, especially for girls, so no uniform isn’t always a solution. However, European schools seem to manage this better. The annual non compliance stories in the September press are so predictable and has any school backed down as a result? I find the effort that senior management puts into policing clothing and hair styles would be much better focused on behaviour.
  17. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    When I went to Chicago the schools there had dress codes. These covered decency and gang colours. Hats were not allowed. Most kids just wore a white T shirt and blue jeans with trainers. A few went more gothic. It really wasn't an issue.

    When the American kids visited us we allowed them to raid the lost property box for items of uniform, which they took back to create a display!
  18. neddyfonk

    neddyfonk Lead commenter

    My sister went to a well known reputable all girls school where the only violations of school uniform were shortened ties, hemlines as high as they dare and jazzy colourful knickerbockers / pantaloons ? which were on lewd display if they bent over. With the LGBT and religious rights campaigners versus gender stereotyping and homogenous looking coordinated smart uniforms preferred by many heads this situation will only get worse.

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