Mandatory uniforms are proposed as a solution to the alarming rise in violence and drop-out rates in public schools. Supporters argue that uniforms disguise economic and ethnic backgrounds, reducing jealousy among students and relieving financial burden on parents. However, it is questionable whether uniforms truly provide all of these benefits. Can one change in public schools really make such a significant improvement? The issue of wearing uniforms in public schools has been widely discussed, with President Clinton and several members of Congress expressing their support.
Supporters of school uniforms say that social and economic classes would no longer be revealed by students’ clothing. Schools will have more of a sense of community, and students’ self-esteem will improve. Proponents assert that uniforms will reduce violence in schools, including instances where gang members have hurt or murdered innocent people because of a colored item of clothing they chose to wear. Uniforms have also been shown to reduce absentee rates. In situations where there are several different financial backgrounds attending the same school, students may be under pressure and possibly ridiculed because of failure to conform to the latest fashion trends. Everybody wearing the same styles of clothes might eliminate that.
In response to growing levels of violence in our schools, many parents, teachers, and school officials have come to see school uniforms as one positive and creative way to reduce discipline problems and increase school safety. They have observed that the adoption of school uniform policies can promote school safety, improve discipline, and enhance the learning environment. As a result, many local communities are deciding to adopt school uniform policies as part of an overall program to improve school safety and discipline. California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, New York, Tennessee, Utah, and Virginia have enacted school uniform regulations. However, some schools have not had as much success, and implementing mandatory school uniforms can be dangerous because it provides the community with a false sense of security.
It is like putting a small bandage on an enormous wound, instead of attempting to find ways to truly deal with the bleeding. Although this can happen, uniforms prove to be a success. In a recent study of uniforms in Georgia Schools, 80% of students stated that they did not feel that the uniforms reduced fights and 68.7% felt that uniforms did not help to make them feel a part of school.
One argument is that if our society is ever to get past bigotry and prejudices, it is imperative that students learn to accept people who do not dress like them. However, others believe that uniforms bring different cultures together. I believe that uniforms usually help in most areas, but I do not see a huge need for them in Ware County. The greatest effect of school uniforms would be not having to wear lab coats! I myself would not feel individually squashed if I were made to wear a uniform. Everyone must look at the main issue pertaining to this topic. Our lives, without our individuality, are meaningless. I would be more than willing to wear a uniform to school, be safe, let my personality express my individualism, and be judged for who I am rather than for what color I am wearing.