Friday, August 21, 2015

Uniforms vs. Dress Codes at School? Why Parents Are All Fired Up

I'm glad my kids have been wearing uniforms for the past few years now. But, even still, I read Facebook, and it makes me mad when I read about friends' daughters who are sent home because of what they are wearing.

The worst part is some of the outfits in question weren't even an issue, in my opinion. From what I saw, they covered all of the parts that should be kept to ourselves. Yet, for some reason, whether it was a tank top or leggings or...whatever the school administration didn't approve of, the outfit was deemed inappropriate and the student was sent home, either for the day or to just change.

And completely interrupting the learning environment, as well as making fashion (or lack of it) issues more important than education.

Understandably, there has to be a dress code and it needs to be adhered to. Sure, we would wreck the whole back-to-school season for fashion designers if our schools all decided to do the right thing - uniforms.

And, believe me, about six years ago, I would have disagreed with the uniform side of the debate. I didn't like the idea of uniforms at all. But, it works. There is no fine line between whether something fits into the dress code or not with uniforms. Students are either wearing the uniforms or they aren't.

And, that means that there's no interruption of their education and learning. There's no chit-chat in the hallway "Did you see what she was wearing?" And that means there is no sending kids home, which essentially means that what you are wearing is more important than your education.

Now, I'm going to get to the "distraction" part here. The main reason school admin are using for why they are sending girls home to change into "appropriate" attire is because their clothing is "distracting" other students.

So, we should probably ditch the pajama days and the other dress up days that many schools participate in for spirit weeks and other "fun" weeks. Because I would think pajamas and crazy socks would be distracting.

And we should probably also get rid of neon colored clothing and maybe even oranges and purples, because those colors might be distracting to certain school aged children, as well.

Stripes, polka dots and plaids probably need to be ruled out, too, because patterns can distract the mind.

All black attire could distract people, too.

Are we getting the point? What is "distracting" for one child may not be for another. On the other hand, one person's fashion sense isn't going to be the same as another's.

So, school admin are singling out which outfits they think are inappropriate and making an example out of these children so that other children will not wear the same thing to school. How sad they are treating our children this way.

No wonder parents are in an uproar! This has been going on for too long now.

Either draft up a uniform code for the school or leave the children alone. And, I also understand that these schools have "dress codes" that include length of skirts and shorts, but wouldn't a uniform be the end-all fix to this problem?

Sure, the kids wouldn't like it at first. They wouldn't be able to express their personal style and fashion at school, but that's not what school is about. They should be focusing on their education. (Unless, of course, they're gearing toward a career in fashion, but that's an entirely different story.)

My children didn't once have a problem with the uniform at their school. As a matter of fact, they seemed to like it better because they didn't really have to pick out clothes each day. What they were going to wear tomorrow was obvious. All we had to worry about is if their uniforms were clean (and still fit).

And the worst part is how schools are stating that the way girls are dressing is distracting to the boys. I said it in a Facebook comment, and I'll say it again. "As long as we are raising classy girls and gentlemen, we don't have to worry about whether our boys are being distracted by girls clothing."

Boil it down to the bottom line, and this whole controversy could be null and void if schools just adopted a uniform. Not everyone is going to agree with the decision in the beginning, but everyone would quickly find out how much easier life is without all of the dress code hassles and debates.

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