In 1755, Benjamin Franklin, inventor, author, and founding father of the American government wrote, “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” Thus, in regards to the debate of the school uniform policy, could it be said, to conform to the masses to secure a little safety; liberty is being forsaken? Uniforms have been around for centuries; yet, only more recently introduced into American public schools in 1979, as a way to combat differences in social status among students. Today, school uniform policies are being looked at as a way to combat violence in the American school systems. Collin’s English Dictionary online defines uniforms as a prescribed identifying set of clothes for members of an organization, and the literal definition of uniform is identical or consistent. By applying the uniform policy in schools, is the intended message to students, to conform and not question authority? The school uniform policy is ineffective because it does not benefit the student body, the parents, or the faculty.
In order for the implementing of the school uniform policy to be effective, the policy must: encourage students both academically and personally, be within a reasonable budget for the parents of students, be easy to enforce, and finally, promote safety for the students and the faculty.
With this in mind, the policy of wearing school uniforms does not directly improve a student’s grade point average or assist in boosting their self-image or self-confidence. Students improve their grades by participating in class, practicing the skills acquired in the classroom, and applying themselves academically to reinforce the skills they have learned, not by how they dress. The policy does not help students personally, either. Not all clothing fits students the same. Society is made up of different body types and uniforms are just that, uniform. Wearing something that does not fit right is extremely uncomfortable and distracting. If a student sitting in the classroom is trying to pay attention to a lesson, but has to constantly adjust their clothing in a worthless attempt to get comfortable, this can be extremely disruptive to the class as a whole because the teacher has to periodically remind the student to stop fidgeting and pay attention. The drawing of this attention to the student and their clothing can be detrimental to their self-confidence, and make them a target for other students to make fun of them. “The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) opposes uniforms on the grounds that they violate students’ rights to freedom of expression as guaranteed by the First Amendment to the Constitution.” (“School Uniforms”). How a student dresses will not directly improve their grades, and making them wear a uniform will curb their expression of individuality. Having to alter a uniform to fit body type can get extremely expensive.
Moreover, parents are affected by...