Loving school uniforms yet?

School dress codes are a subtle way to prepare our children for the real world where they must dress for success. As I pass by at least six school bus stops every morning, it’s nice to see our kids looking so good out there these days as opposed to when it was sometimes hard to tell the parents from the students.

Initially, many were against school uniforms for various reasons. But there has been little fanfare from parents about the expense, nor from students about the willingness to wear them. Even based on this petition seemingly geared towards high school students who are at least 18 years old, with only 1,758 signatures (from both parents and students), the majority aren’t opposed.

I stopped by a couple of the bus stops in my area, and while a few kids admitted they don’t mind wearing uniforms, none wanted their name attached to that statement in print. But they all begrudgingly acknowledged that the new dress code has made their lives a little easier. And while I still see young men with sagging pants at the bus stop, hopefully the code is being enforced on school grounds.

“The uniforms were actually much less expensive than buying regular clothes,” says parent Peggy Brooks, whose son attends Rex Middle School. “It draws their attention away from the clothing. You still have some kids competing with shoes to distinguish themselves, but for the most part everyone looks alike. At least that’s one less distraction.”

While school uniforms will not fix all of CCPS’s problems, it seems to be a good addition. Has your child acclimated to wearing uniforms? Were they as expensive as some thought?

REMINDER: CCPS Superintendent Edmond Heatley’s final public forum will be held on Wed. Sept. 30 at Mt. Zion High School (2535 Mt. Zion Parkway, Jonesboro).

78 comments Add your comment

I Sub in Several CC Schools

October 6th, 2009
3:24 pm

Many of the schools have ceased to enforce the uniform dress code and I am seeing more and more students wearing provocative clothing or individualizing their uniforms. The teachers, just as they are with discipline, are overwhelmed by the number of students that push the limits, and many have begun to give up.

Listen to the sub

October 6th, 2009
8:15 pm

The sub says it all. When teachers don’t get administrative support, their hands are tied. Yet this board, comprised of current and former teachers, has yet to pass the first policy that offers teachers direct tangible support from CCPS when it comes to discipline.

It’s not like this board doesn’t know. Several of them, as current and former teachers, will privately acknowledge how the lack of support for teachers has affected even their own classrooms. But I guess now that they have a little piece of the pie when it comes to serving on the BOE, what they’ll talk about privately is forgotten publicly, to protect their own political power, such as it is.

KimWhit

October 7th, 2009
7:15 pm

Most of the students I’ve seen still look a hot mess to me. The girls have started to “stripperize” their uniforms and the boys have modified theirs to the same “white tee/saggin” look that they’ve always worn.

Big Papi

October 8th, 2009
9:50 am

Enter your comments here Uniforms were a great first step but the policy MUST be ENFORCED. Teaching the native born to comminicate in standard english, now thats a challenge………..

JimBob

October 9th, 2009
1:44 pm

I haven’t seen any chnages the “boys” have learned to by-pass the regulation by wearing xxxl pants in the required colors but at their knees. Great job BOC and not to leave the girls out…they still wear high heels. I saw one the other day that looked liked a hooker with her short dress and 6 inch heels.

Sandy

October 9th, 2009
7:30 pm

Uniforms are not working at Adamson Middle School. Girls are wearing uniform skirts with multi-colored argyle socks on. They are also wearing ribbons and shoes of every color in the rainbow. The males are wearing tennis shoes from every color in the rainbow and layering their shirts with crazy colors. Daily there is a debate with a student as to what constitutes the proper uniform. Both males and females try to get away with jeans and skinny leg jeans. Jacket colors are way out there. What’s the point of having a dress code if you can’t enforce it.

AJC please hush your mouth

October 11th, 2009
11:38 pm

AJC can you please stop the CHARADE with headlines such as Clayton schools will learn accreditation fate in 30 days when anyone with HALF A BRAIN knows Elgart has already signed, sealed and delivered the POLITICAL POWER PLAY.

You were told this from THE VERY BEGINNING, that NOT ONE student would graduate with an unaccredited diploma.

AJC you just look EMBARRASSINGLY unaware with headlines like that. How many subscriptions do you HAVE TO LOSE, before you realize your readers reject BOOSTERISM as a substitute for REAL REPORTING!

PioneerBrother

October 13th, 2009
7:37 am

I love the uniforms. My son started Kindergarten and it was way cheaper to buy uniforms than regular clothes. I allow him to be different through his personality. School is about education thats whats wrong with us we focus on the wrong thing. Who the hell cares what u have on. Bye the way when did the get rid of recess in the schools?

The Sarge

October 17th, 2009
11:40 pm

A commenter, presumably a student, expresses a disdain for uniforms, stating a desire to be unique. It’s certainly ok to want to express individuality in one form or another, however, could this be a manifestation of low self esteem? Personally, I strongly favor school uniforms, however, education leadership, in conjunction with establishing dress codes, should be stressing the need to prioritize the many variables in students’ lives. Lets educate these kids, not simply command them to wear a uniform.

CCPS High School Teacher

October 24th, 2009
12:43 am

The uniforms are not working on the high school level. Boys and girls have figured out how to get around it and it’s getting worse every week. Girls are looking ridiculous in their short, short skirts, and high heels and the guys are wearing pants down to their knees. The uniform policy is a great idea, it just needs much more clarification. The students have figured out that as long as they wear a collared shirt in the right color (or close to it) they can wear anything over it. And girls don’t have to wear a polo style shirt which leaves them wide open to anything as long as it has a collar. They are suppose to layer their clothes in their school colors, but that’s not happening either. As far as discipline goes, the kids are so far out of touch it’s not funny. Our AP tells everyone to go to homeroom at least 10 times before 90% of the students start moving after breakfast in the morning. During the pledge and moment of silence, there is sometimes laughter and total disrespect. The faculty tries to do what they can, but they are very discouraged with the students and their behavior. Most parents have no idea how their kids are acting at school or they don’t care. It’s all very sad! We are close to being taken over by the state if test scores don’t come up this year. As a 30 year Clayton County veteran, our schools have gone down the drain. I would like to encourage parents to visit their child’s school and see what’s going on first hand.

Resolute

October 24th, 2009
3:39 pm

The answer to the questions posed by this blog is a resounding “YES”

DoubleAction

November 2nd, 2009
3:43 pm

This what happens when children begins to show off their assets. I’m DoubleAction and nobody told me to say that.

GARY PETER KLAHR

November 25th, 2009
1:49 am

As a former 8 yr ELECTED member of the Governing Bd of the 2nd largest HS district in the nation (Phx Union), and as a retired lawyer, I will tell you that uniforms are ABSURD. To see why, look at the PARENTS (not kids) anti-uni website—www.aprod.org and its many links. DRESS CODES are the answer and they should be ENFORCED; we were able to do that in PHX w/o going to unis—and I don’t see why you-all can’t do the same. NO school has to tolerate baggy, saggy clothes or ones showing too much skin. But the problem with unis is that they ban PERFECTLY-APPROPRIATE conservative, TRADITIONAL street clothes worn by school kids—at least in the south & west –for 100 years—namely PROPERLY-fitted denim jeans and logo or striped tee shirts.

This khaki/polo rule is ABSURD and self-defeating. It is MORE preppy & expensive than “regular clothes” ( FEW kids want to stage  a fashion show at school; I have worked with anti-uni parents in 30 states and NONE EVER—ZERO—wanted to send their kids in fancy,name-brand clothes.) We are JUST fighting for the right to send our kids in DIVERSE clothes of different styles & colors as we always have. You-all posters who want uniformity—-Please emigrate to CUBA, CHINA or NORTH KOREA—and you will find all the neatly-dressed uniformity you can want. This is AMERICA—where JFK reminded us that “We must make the world safe for diversity.”
At least the Ga. schools should permit PARENT opt-out from unis as does all the Miami, Fla. schools and all schools in NYC, Wisc. and California. Believe it or not, mand unis WITH PARENT opt-out works; the kids LOSE the opt-out if they violate the regular dress code. You foolish people do NOT realize that KHAKIS can be bought & worn JUST as over-sized as jeans (as ONE poster points out)—and the 3 buttons on polo shirts allow MUCH more skin to be exposed than when someone wears a crew-necked tee shirt. But your stupid Board wants to suspend kids for wearing perfectly-appropriate clothes worn by 90 pct of U.S. school kids.
NO THANKS. If I was there, I would do what Long Beach,. Calif HS kids did 10 years ago—threatened SUICIDE (really) unless the Bd rescinded HS unis—which they did. Now only two “choice” schools have unis there.
Again, I SHARE the feeling of the 90 pct pro-uni group that kids NEED discipline and need to be PROPERLY dressed for school. But diverse styles & colors—subject to a regular dress code—is the answer—not uniforms. Some schools have spent $500,000 defending uni policies in court. Do your schools have that much SPARE CHANGE around? I suspect NOT.. Write me at GaryK57647@aol.com for info on how to stop fully-mand unis in your area.

Jeff

November 25th, 2009
11:01 am

“Low self-esteem”? In a word, no.

Jeff

November 25th, 2009
11:23 am

Of course, the REAL problem is that once they’re instituted, dress codes and uniforms don’t change. This is as much about mere sartorial conservatism (in the sense of not wanting change) as anything else; they’re designed to prevent it. I could incorporate Spandex and rock-star hair into an ensemble featuring a waist-length double-breasted jacket and tie (and have in fact done so), but it’d be rejected on a basis of “unfamiliarity” as much as anything else. The real problem with uniforms and dress codes is that they enshrine a certain poverty of invention as a sort of classical state.

drop a bomb on clayton county

November 25th, 2009
2:43 pm

why don’t they have these problems in alpharetta?

clayton county is a joke. if these kids (and parents) knew how to act and dress appropriately to begin with there would be no need for uniforms. so long as your boy goes to school dressed like a crack dealer and your daughter like she’s next on the main stage pole, they will fail.

Gerard

November 25th, 2009
4:34 pm

Amazing that, in 2009, there are schools still introducing uniform as mandatory policy for the first time. This all happened in the late 80s and early 90s in Australia, and to this day many a foolish student claims to be striking a blow on an almost daily basis by refusing to adhere to school policy regarding required uniform. Education is a responsibility – not a right as many will attest – and the sooner students become accustomed to holding up their end of the scholastic and socially acceptable behaviour bargain, the sooner positive social and academic outcomes can be achieved.

Jeff

November 25th, 2009
4:41 pm

Heh. Here they’ll tell you education’s a privilege.

Still, who gets to say what’s “socially acceptable behavior”? I guess the answer to that is as close as you can come (besides “who’s got all the money”) to the definition of “elite” (as opposed to “elitist”, which really just means “people different from me that I don’t like”).

Lauren

November 25th, 2009
11:35 pm

I HATED wearing uniforms in school. I don’t know where parents get the idea that it makes lives less stressful for kids – it doesn’t. And if your child is THAT into fashion, then they deserve the extra stress they’re putting on themselves or they need to go into the industry in the future. Kids at my high school still sagged thier khaki’s, wore offensive hoodies, wore flip-flops and convienently forgot their belts at home. Uniforms aren’t any cheaper or more expensive than any other clothes, so don’t go there. You just have to buy another set of clothes, which is where expense comes in. Why buy more clothes when you have plenty?

Author of the Petition

December 1st, 2009
2:39 pm

I wish the AJC would give me a spread or at least a small space on their newspaper to actually be able to voice my opinion to the masses rather than reducing me to a small mentioning in a blog. Not only that, but I would GLADLY debate the school officials on the topic of uniforms in a public setting.

LSK

December 2nd, 2009
10:12 pm

So many parents keep speaking about the monies saved by purchasing uniforms. You would rather save money instead of your child’s individualism. If parents and school officials would, actually, focus on the education of the children, the test scores would be much higher and we could begin bringing back the educators that left when Clayton County lost its accreditation. Parents need to focus on what’s important. Yes, children should dress in a neat way. But dressing them like drones isn’t the solution. I have suggested many times that the teachers be made to adhere to the same dress code. The teachers protested. Why? They want the children in uniforms. Is it a selfish desire to maintain their personality when they enter their work place? Wow… Now. What about the children? When did being under the age of 18 mean that you lost your right to express who you were? Walk the green line. Eat lunch without talking. Where the same colors. What’s next?

whitegurl

January 10th, 2010
9:30 pm

School uniforms suck. Parents cant talk for the kids, kids hate uniforms. I have worn uniforms for every school and i go to a school where I dont have to thats crap! You guys cant put uniforms in the high schools thats wrong!

Leslie

June 29th, 2010
4:48 pm

The kids do look much better in school uniforms, it’s also easier for them to concentrate on their studies.

comcody

July 17th, 2010
11:26 pm

you simply minded people…. listen to my words. this uniform has brong nothing but pain and horror to my fellow classmates and i think we had enough… hell, we all think we had enough, every single thing that has happened or said about the pros of uniform is bull. students hate it, nothing that the board hoped has changed, and we all feel like were in the hitler youth! conform this… and conform that. well damnit i’m not going to stand for something that i dont believe in! if you havent figured out what i mean, well damnit i mean reform! fight for the things we believe in! fight like our fore fathers had! fight like our country had for freedom! fight like the late great mlk jr once did! fight till we see the mighty v for victory!!! fight to regain our freedom from uniforms!!! fight! fight! FIGHT!!!!!!
thank you

just my oppinion

August 5th, 2010
1:46 pm

It is my belief that the uniforms were put in place to take our children’s focus off their clothes and allow them to concentrate on their school work. Unfortunately, the kids now want their parent to buy name brand clothing that follows the uniform guidelines, which in the end, clothing is still a major distraction.

Lisa

August 8th, 2010
10:18 am

I am sorry for the late response as I just found this blog. But this response is to the person who stated that CCPS blew it wehn Dr. Barbara Pulliam left the county. In contrast, the best thing that could have ever happened to the county is when they got rid of Dr. Pulliam. If truth be told, she was totally clueless and relied on Sharon Contress-Halton to do everything. She is the main reason that the county is experiencing the financial difficulty it is going through as she headed the bad land deal which was not remotely worth the money that was paid. She also gave salary increases to her relatives and friends of 100,000+ yearly and one of which who only held a bachelor’s degree. She was cruel, mean, and downright under-handed!

Namine Ramirez

August 10th, 2010
11:21 pm

First of all, this is completely inaccurate. Uniforms have cost an absolute fortune for me! I’ve already spent over $500 for uniforms. Is it a choice? First of all, you can’t have your kids wearing cheap, bad brands unless you want your kids to be mocked throughout their high school career. My daughter had told me about this one boy who wore the exact same thing every day of the week and how much everyone talked about him behind is back. The uniforms do NOT make them look anymore professional. In all honesty, it’s just made the kids more rebellious towards how they desire to “style” their clothing.

There is no absolute way to make all kids equal through means of uniform what-so-ever. There is always customization involved and kids rarely want to be exactly the same as another now-a-days. The best brands come from Hollister and the sort, and that is by NO means cheap. Do we love the uniforms? No. I would transfer my daughter out of Clayton County, but there is too much difficulty with the transportation. Now, they’ve even imported ridiculous schedule adjustments?

The man who even suggested the idea got kicked out of California after all! Why on earth was Clayton County stupid enough to accept something rejected by those in California? This is ridiculous and unreasonable. Clayton County is GHETTO, and will ALWAYS be ghetto.

The Constitutiion Of The United States Of America

August 10th, 2010
11:58 pm

I would appreciate it if you all would stop trampling over me……..You know freedom of speech. Whats next males cant wear braids, Females can’t wear short hair. Why claim to respect me then totally ignore all my parts?