Uniforms And Its Effect On Public School
As students and parents, there is a need for safer schools, with less bullying, gang violence, discrimination, and distractions, and more learning. Well, there is one solution to help with these problems in our publish schools, school uniforms. There are a high number of issues going on in public schools today, rich or poor: gang violence, discrimination, bullying, suicide, failing students, competition, and so much more. The NEA, national educators, stated, “Bullying impacts approximately 13 million students every year, and some 160,000 students stay home from school each day because of bullying”(NEA). There is a solution that can reduce the amount of these issues in public schools, school uniforms. It sounds too simple, maybe even crazy, but from personal experiences, studies and data, and journals prove otherwise. Therefore, should be school uniforms in all public schools to help with safer and better environment for students to learn and grow.
Some students hate the thought of having to wear uniforms, but if you look at the effects of uniforms, they would see it is not as bad as you think. Students want to express themselves with their clothes, they feel they are entitled to wearing whatever they want. All schools whether the students like it or not have a dress code policy that all students are forced to follow anyway. Uniforms are just a step up, a step towards good. There are still ways to express yourself with having uniforms in schools. Who better to tell the differences and how they are beneficial than a girl who has been to school wearing uniforms in a private school, as well as not wearing uniforms in a public school. A girl named Samantha Schmitz has done both uniforms and no uniforms in her years of school. She is now a junior in high school and wore uniforms during middle school. She said, “I liked having uniforms for many reasons: it took me like five minutes to get ready, no one cared how I looked, No one judged what I was wearing, and everyone just saw each other for who they really are”(Schmitz).
Samantha understood that yes she could not wear comfy sweats to school, but at least no one cared what she wore and she wore the same uniform every day. Uniforms are great for the reasons she listed and it helps the parents not have their children take an hour or so to get out the door every morning. Samantha also understood that she could not express herself to the full extent off kids who do not have to wear uniforms. She explains, “ I still got to express myself through dress, by spirit days, accessories, sports, and more accessories. But I expressed myself by making friends and telling them about myself” (Schmitz). There are many ways to express yourself while still wearing a uniform. Uniforms help with making friends, getting ready easier in the morning on students and parents, and school spirit. It also helps students not see each other as poor or rich, because they all are wearing the same thing, which gets rid of biases and discrimination. Since the kids are all the same level, and it helps get their eyes off the external things, and more on each other. There are much more benefits than just these that can make school easier for students and parents.
There are countless numbers of small and big benefits to having uniforms in all schools. One of the bigger benefits of uniforms is to help substantially, not fix, the problem of bullying in schools today. Bullying is having a rising effect on students even at a young age; they feel this need to be better than each other and will put classmates and friends down to get there, that is what they are taught in today's society. A website named, “Understand the issues, understand each other”, talks about the matter of bullying and says, “When all students have dressed alike, competition between students over clothing choices and the teasing of those who are dressed in less expensive or less fashionable outfits can be eliminated”(ProCon.org). When all the children are dressed alike there is no reason for them to keep trying to look better and be better than each other, they are all equal. With uniforms, they are not caring about how they look, but instead more focused on being kind and not teasing each other but getting to know one another first. Contextualize evidence: It is heartbreaking when a student is bullied repeatedly for being poor or not having clothes, wearing the same thing every day, and therefore has no friends. The website also stated “all kids on the same playing field in terms of their appearance.
I think it probably gives them a sense of belonging and a feeling of being socially accepted”(ProCon.org)This is crucial for someone young or old, humans need a place where they feel like they belong, to feel safe. Without this, we see people all the time feel like they never belonged and go as far to take their own life for not fitting in anywhere, and these painful issues start at a young age. So it is so important to have students feel like they belong and feel safe, and this issue can be repaired with school uniforms. The National Crime Victimization did a study, “this study uses a chi-square automatic interaction detection (CHAID) decision tree and logistic regression models to identify factors that increase bullying in schools. Being distracted and the fear of being attacked was among the top statistically significant variables when using both methodologies”(Brewer Jr 219). Having a safe school in this world today is much needed, and their needs to be simple steps that can happen to improve this issue.
Safety in public schools is extremely important. There is so much violence, behavior problems, shootings, suicides, bomb threats, trespassers, gang violence, associations, possession of drugs, fights, and more. Students as young as elementary schools should not have to fear school or deal with these problems of violence. Around 2000, the school district of Philadelphia in Pennsylvania required 250 public schools to require a school uniform policy. Researchers from the University of Houston analyzed almost 20 years of date, research, records, scores, behavior, attendance, and more to see the effect of the study. They concluded, “The study concluded that uniform policies resulted in improvements in academics, attendance, and behavior”(Gale).
This data is valuable because it was taken in an area with high crime rates over the span of about 20 years, which will allow us to see either positive or negative change. Likewise, Long Beach schools did similar studies, implementing school uniform policy at various public schools in the area. After two years, reports and research showed a huge impact, “reports of assault and battery in the district's schools decreased by 34%, assault with a deadly weapon dropped by 50%, fighting incidents went down by 51%, sex offenses were cut by 74%, robbery dropped by 65%, possession of weapons (or weapon ""look-alikes"") decreased by 52%, possession of drugs went down by 69%, and vandalism was lowered by 18%”(ProCon.org). This area in California also has high crime rates. There are many more studies and experiments that followed this impactful train, and schools that show growth in safety, and improved with better education from wearing school uniforms, like private or charter schools.
Some people are against the idea of school uniforms for a couple of reasons; reasons that can be solved by an explanation of the school uniform policies. But nevertheless, these concerns are important and make sense why people are opposed to them. Parents have complained and addressed the issue of the cost of uniforms, saying that it is not fair for schools to force the families to purchase uniforms. However, if parents took the time to look into this, they would see that it not as difficult to get help or find the money to get the uniforms. Most parents buy their kid clothes before school or during school so they can have outfits during the week, and that is the same as buying a couple outfits for the children to wear throughout the whole year. One journal explained “Some states such as California have put legislation in place that requires public schools with mandatory uniform policies to offer low-income families financial assistance to purchase the uniforms. No federal law forbids a school district from requiring its students to purchase uniforms, however, and provisions requiring exemptions for low-income families do not apply to private schools”(Gale).
The cost of uniforms can be solved easily with the government's help. From the same journal explained what the cost is estimated around for family that can afford it, “ A 2013 study by school uniform retailer Land’s End and the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) found that 77 percent of principals and other school leaders estimated the cost of their children’s uniforms to be no more than $150 a year”(Gale). This was five years ago, however, it is not bank threatening to buy a couple of outfits. Furthermore, schools with uniforms have a system where old student have the option to donate their old uniforms to the students who can not afford them. So there are many solutions to this issue that guardians have about uniforms, and like all the other concerns it just takes a little looking into.
To conclude, school uniforms in public schools would be really impactful, and helpful to our society, and unsafe schools. There are so many benefits to having uniforms in schools. Kids should have a safe place to go. A place to feel like they belong.A place where there isn't drugs and bullying and violence. A place where they can be themselves, and have fun. A place where they can not worry about if they look better than their classmates, or worry about external things. A place to make friends. A place to learn. School uniforms will not fix the problem right away, but it is a start to improving schools to be a place to learn and grow safely.
Gale. ""School Uniforms."" Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection, Gale http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/PC3010999340/OVIC?u=msjacintocc&sid=OVIC&xid=9afd8faa. Accessed 9 Dec. 2018.
“Nation's Educators Continue Push for Safe, Bully-Free Environments.” NEA, www.nea.org/home/53298.htm.
Schmitz, Samantha. Personal interview. 2 December 2018.
“School Uniforms - ProCon.org.” ProConorg Headlines, school-uniforms.procon.org/. Accessed 5 December 2018.
Brewer Jr., Steven Lawrence. “Fearful and Distracted in School: Predicting Bullying among Youths.” Children & Schools, vol. 39, no. 4, Oct. 2017, pp. 219–226.
EBSCOhost, proxylib.msjc.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=pbh&AN=125413210&site=eds-live. Accessed 10 December 2018