Essay/Term paper: School uniforms (con)
Essay, term paper, research paper: Education
Schools today aren't in the best condition. There is teasing, violence, discrimination, cliques, and poverty. There is much to say about how having mandatory school uniforms will help these problems. My question is, will uniforms help these problems enough to dismiss the hurt that they would cause? I say the uniforms do little to help.
Having uniforms would stop the teasing and discrimination about clothing, but there is more to tease or discriminate someone about rather than just clothing. Such as hygiene, looks, personality, intelligence, race, and the list goes on. So unless people somehow find a way to be perfect in everyone's opinion, teasing and discrimination won't stop.
As for violence, it's the same story. Uniforms would only stop the smallest percentage. In some ways uniforms actually make violence less preventable by eliminating one major warning sign. For example the black trench coats that were worn in by the murderers at Colorado's Columbine High School shooting. Of course I'm not saying we should arrest anyone who wears a trench coat, but the way that someone dresses can say a lot about their personality.
If you're thinking that uniforms will end symbols of being in a gang such as gang colors, think about how many other ways that a gang member could symbolize that they were in a gang such as rolling up your sleeve or leaving out the tag on your shirt.
Uniforms wouldn't help stop cliques. People have cliques because in a clique you have the same interests as each other, you can relate to each other, you get along with one another, etc. not because you shop at the same stores.
Wearing the same thing as someone else would hardly help the poverty issue. It doesn't change the fact that you are poor. It just masks the fact that you can't afford new clothes but there are other, less noticeable signs of poverty like never having lunch money, or at the high school level, your car could be a sign.
In my survey of Douglas High School students and teachers, the percentage of people that wanted school uniforms was about the same as the percentage who were against them; but the people who wanted school uniforms didn't have very good reasons of why they wanted them and they didn't seem to have thought about what uniforms were capable of. One student surveyed answered the question, "what are some advantages of wearing school uniforms?" by saying, "You don't get judged! No stereotypes!" . Another answered the same question by saying, "Uniforms look cool! And you don't have to worry about what to wear the next day." . Both of these students answered the question about the disadvantages of having school uniforms by saying there are no disadvantages.
The anti-uniform students seemed to have thought more and were able to give extra comments and answer questions keeping in mind the advantages as well as the disadvantages. For example one student surveyed said, "Uniforms would crush the personal style and individuality of the student body." they also added this in the comments section, "When adolescents are in high school it is a critical stage in mental development. The personality is able to evolve and expand; uniforms would only be a ninderance." . A teacher who was surveyed wrote, "Students today are trying to find out who they are and their style of dress is an expression of their personality and character. I do not believe uniforms are the answer." .
Individuality is what makes the school interesting. I do realize that there are other ways to be an individual and express yourself besides your clothing, but clothing does play a big role in showing others what you are like and finding out who you want to be.
I think that if we were to compare the damage that wearing uniforms causes to the good that wearing them would do, we would realize that uniforms do more bad than good and we could concentrate on finding real solution to all of the problems in schools.
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