Running head: UNIFORMS FOR SUCCESS 1 Uniforms for Success Krystal D. Turner ENG122: English Composition II Instructor: Rosa Pearson February 2, 2016
UNIFORMS FOR SUCCESS 2 School uniforms have always been a private school staple encouraging student professionalism and a driving force in minimalizing school related violence. Since the Clinton administration, public schools are now starting to realize the benefits attributing to student life and parental wallets despite the opposition that student individualism is neglected. Students with behavioral problems would greatly benefit from the public school adoption of a uniform only policy. In his study, John A. Huss (2007) references Hoffler- Riddick and Lassiter’s (1996) research that examined a mandatory school uniform policy in Norfolk, Virginia, public schools and “found a dramatic decline in discipline infractions, increased attendance, and improvement in the overall instructional climate” (Huss, 2007). Additionally, the classroom discipline is at 85 percent, Image in the community is at an 83 percent, student safety is at a 79 percent[Hus07]. In his 1996 State of The Union address President, Bill Clinton was quoted saying "If it means that teenagers will stop killing each other over designer jackets, then our public schools should be able to require their students to wear uniforms”(President Clinton, 1995). It all started in Long Beach California, which is perhaps the largest school system in the country, in response to increased gang violence, bullying, attendance and behavioral problems. The school district's solution was to implement a policy that made school uniforms mandatory. Five years after the Long Beach initiative; the crime report summaries indicate an overall decrease if a school-related crime has dropped 86% even though K-8 student enrollment increased 14%. “The five categories of school crime where comparisons can be made between 1993 levels and 1999 levels are as follows: (a) sex offenses down 93% (from 57 to 4 offenses); (b) robbery/extortion down 85% (from
UNIFORMS FOR SUCCESS 3 34 to 5 cases); (c) selling or using chemical substances down 48% (from 71 to 37 cases); (d) weapons or look-a-likes down 75% (from 145 to 36 cases); and (e) dangerous devices down 96% (from 46 to 2 cases; LBUSD, 1999)”[Lop03]. After looking at these statistics, it seems that school uniforms do not hinder student achievement, it exacerbates the student’s potential to improve the overall student behavior that has a negative outward manifestation. Wearing school uniforms is a policy every school should have because School uniforms would help make all students feel equal. We have all been there, being judged and bullied because we did not sport the latest trend in clothing because our families could not afford a designer or other expensive labeled clothing in school. In the first paragraph of an in-depth study conducted by the National School Board Association, one school board member made the statement that “I do believe that campuses benefit from this policy. “Approximately 70 percent of our students are economically disadvantaged.
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