As I was sitting in my English class on a gloomy day in January, adjusting a brace that I have on my knee due to an injury that was changing position over and over because of the fabric of uniform I’m wearing, the question should uniforms be a standard in private school occurred to me once again. When I was in middle school I attended a private school where uniforms were not required and I did not see a big problem. The only problem I saw was that the uniform standards were not enforced for everyone and the faculty seemed biased as to who they would dress code and who they would not. I was much taller than most of the girls in my grade and looked a lot older than they did, so clothes were somewhat hard to find for me that fit my middle school fashion vision, so I started shopping in the juniors department much earlier than the other girls who could wear clothes from Justice until they were in eighth grade. They would often wear tank tops or off the shoulder outfits, one girl even wore a crop top to school, but they were never dress coded. However, one day I wore a tank top with a sweater and I got into serious trouble with an advisor because it was “inappropriate” even though I was fully covered.
Now that I am on my fourth year of a dress code high school I find myself envying my friends who go to other schools and other private schools that don’t have to wear uniforms. I do not believe in uniforms. I think they take away individuality, and in your senior year you outgrow all your old uniforms shirts you will have to buy new ones that you’ll only be wearing for another year, and uniforms are very expensive. In an article in The Guardian, a teacher states “Uniforms give students a sense of belonging,” however, a uniform does not automatically guarantee friends or belonging. I would say a huge problem with uniforms if feeling uncomfortable in them and not feeling like you look good, and spending your whole high school career seeing people in the same outfit as you wearing it much better.
In an article written for The New Yorker by Mark Oppenheimer he explains a few upsides and downsides to school uniforms, one downside that I found interesting was that some schools were experiencing more violence after they introduced uniforms, I would be interested to see the actual study on this though because not much detail is written into it. But showing the pros and cons led me to a realizations, it’s not about what the students want or a drive to express themselves, or even uniformity. It is because students are more docile in uniforms, making us easier to influence.