There has been many discussions on the whether or not to compel use of uniforms in high schools .There has also been a debate on what is appropriate uniform especially for the female students. Is it a short skirt? Or is it a long skirt? Uniforms have existed for a long period of time and they have both positive and negative impacts on students. Some of these include; repressing individuality among students, affordability of the attires in comparison to casual ware, and ensure students do not concentrate on clothes at the expense of academic work. High School Students should wear school uniforms to enhance enthusiasm of students, enable students to avoid peer pressure on dressings, bring unity and identity among the students, instill discipline, enhance security, and make all students equal. (Elisabetta & Imberman, 2012)
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Equalization, Social Status and Academic Impact of Wearing School Uniforms
Wearing of school uniforms is very essential and should be encouraged in all high schools. Among the critical reasons why school uniforms should be encouraged is that they ensure that students do not concentrate on the prices of clothes that they possess at the expense of academics. Wearing of casual clothes creates differentiation between the affluent and those from humble back grounds. Wearing uniforms ensures that students focus on academic issues, and through this fair competition is experienced in the classroom and leads to equalization across different social status. (King, 2011)
Wearing of uniforms also brings unity. It brings a sense of a team or an organization of people who have the same objective. Uniforms ensure unity as students from the same school will work together for improvement of both their own performance as well as that of the school. When students are in uniforms they will work together even if they do not know one another personally. Lack of school uniforms would make each student live individually and in case of a problem, it would have been difficult to get assistance from the other students. (Vopat, 2010)
Security and Discipline of Students
School uniforms also ensure security of the students. It is very easy to notice a stranger among the students when they are all dressed in uniforms. It becomes easy for the students as well as the administration to be vigilant on security matters. Even for the outsiders they are more able to protect students on security issues as they report to the administrations of relevant schools in case of any unusual activity that they note happening to students of a certain school. Without school uniforms it would have been difficult to differentiate students and strangers. This therefore, protects students from risks such as kidnapping by strangers. (Vopat, 2010)
Uniforms also instill discipline among students. When students are on their uniforms, it gives them an identity of students. They are thus compelled by the identity to behave in a manner that is acceptable by both the school administration, parents and the government. Without uniforms would be difficult to be differentiated from the public and this would result to loss to a sense of responsibility that binds them to obey both the school rules as well as the government rules. Use of school uniforms eliminates individuality and sets commonality among the respective schools. (Elisabetta & Imberman, 2012)
Self Esteem and Pride
Uniforms also enable students to avoid peer pressure that results from dressing. All the students have common attire. This prevents lack of self esteem that would have occurred if all manners of items were condoned in the school environment. Some students whose parents have no ability to constantly replace their children’s attire or keep up with the current market attires would feel oppressed and this could even affect their academic work as they would spend most of they would spend most of their times meditating on how their parents are poor. Uniforms thus provide an equal opportunity for all students. (King, 2011)
School uniforms also make students proud of their schools. Having a school logo printed on their attire makes them proud members of a certain school. This boosts both their self esteem as well as well as their enthusiasm. This gives them confidence in undertakings and even boosts their performance in schools. Without the uniforms there would be no connection between the students and their schools. Their self esteem and enthusiasm would have been lower in comparison with when they are in uniforms. They thus would have performed less impressive compared to when they are on the school uniforms. (Vopat, 2010)
Cost Implication and Social Status
Uniforms are also affordable. They are cheaper than casual clothes. A student will require just two or three pairs of uniform per year. This reduces the heavy costs that would have been incurred when purchasing fashionable clothes which would also require to be replaced constantly. It would have been a heavy burden for parents who do not have a strong financial basis. With uniforms, all parents are equal regardless of their financial status. In case casual clothes were authorized in schools, some of the parents would feel depressed as their children would not be able to cope up with the conditions of dressing set by their counterparts from affluent families. (Elisabetta & Imberman, 2012)
The most likely result would have been establishment of schools according to the social class of the parents. There would be schools for the rich and those for the poor. This differentiation would lower the standards of education and disadvantage those from poor back ground. It would have been difficult for those in low standard schools to perform as their colleagues in the better schools. There would also be unnecessary enmity between the two groups of students as one group would seem superior to the other one. Those from the affluent families would view their counterparts in lower –standard schools as inferior and despise se them. This would result to formation of social classes in the societies which were abolished long ago after independence. (Elisabetta & Imberman, 2012)
I strongly advocate for use of uniforms for high school students. The merits of wearing uniforms in High School outweigh the demerits as one will not be curtailed to wear uniform forever. Not wearing school uniform endangers the students security, and is likely to result to discrimination and setting of social classes between the poor and the rich. This is highly discouraged and is against the principles of justice and human rights. Wearing school uniform will ensure uniformity and guarantee equal competition among all participants in the class. I again strongly recommend the wearing of uniforms in high schools.
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