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School Uniforms

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Essay title: School Uniforms

Since former President, Bill Clinton’s State of the Union Address in 1996 there has been a push to propel schools towards the idea of school uniforms (Viadero). While supporters of school uniforms believe such ideas that it creates a safer environment for the students, and they are more focused on their work; others frown upon the idea of installing required school uniforms because it infringes on the individuals’ right of freedom of expression presented by the first amendment, and that some families simply do not have to funds to pay for school uniforms (which in turn can be a supporting argument, or an argument against). Throughout this paper we will discuss the positive aspects, and the negative, about school uniforms, and whether or not they help create a better situation for students to learn, or if the create yet another distraction from students learning.

Support for School Uniforms:

One of the chief benefits of school uniforms, say supporters, is that they make schools safer. Uniforms are said to reduce gang influence, minimize violence by reducing some sources of conflict, and help to identify trespassers. Parents benefit because they are no longer pressured to buy the latest fashions, and they spend less on their children's clothing. Uniforms are also claimed to help erase cultural and economic differences among students, and set a tone for serious study (Boutelle). Supporters also say uniforms enhance students' self-concepts, classroom behavior, and academic performance (Caruso).

Still, uniforms offer a variety of benefits, according to supporters. Uniforms "promote school safety and enhance the learning environment, and diminish the clothing competition," says Linda Rondeau, assistant superintendent of educational services at Pittsburg Unified School District. "Elementary was really all right with it, [since] most of the students at our sites had been voluntarily wearing uniforms for a couple of years," Rondeau says. "The junior high students were quite unhappy with it. Overall, parents were thrilled” (Caruso).

As far as the clothing competition of who has the nicest or most expensive clothes, Judy Hunt-Brown, principal at Maeola R. Beitzel Elementary School in Sacramento, says classmates who are dressed alike are far less distracted. "Students spend less time talking about and analyzing everyone's dress. There are also fewer issues with the kind of shoes students need to have to be able to participate in physical education” (Isaacson). Many people would agree that a students’ safety is a top priority. With the growing levels of violence in schools today; parents, teachers, and school officials everywhere are starting to learn towards school uniforms as a positive way to reduce discipline problems and increase school safety.

Argument Against School Unifroms:

For those people who oppose school uniforms, their main argument is based on the ideas that school uniform policies violate the students' First

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