Controversial Essay: School Uniforms.
School uniforms in public schools are becoming more and more popular across the nation. Public school systems would benefit if a mandatory school uniform policy were to be adopted. Opposition is always a factor when trying to make changes. However, taking all things into consideration, the positive effects far outweigh the negative effects. School uniforms should be required in public schools because their use would lead to less violence, better education, and lower cost to parents.
Not everyone is in favor of school uniforms. In fact, the American Civil Liberties Union believes that public school uniforms are a violation of a student's First Amendment right to free speech (Kuhn 86). Many parents and students use this argument to oppose school uniform policies. However, students can express themselves in other ways besides the type of clothes they wear.
By enforcing a dress code that requires school uniforms, public schools will have less violence on campus. Since 1994, when mandatory uniform policies were adopted in the Long Beach Unified School District, district officials have found that violence and discipline problems dramatically decreased. In the first year following implementation, overall school crime decreased by 36%; sex offenses, by 74%; physical fights between students, by 51%; weapons offenses, by 50%; assault and battery offenses, by 34%; school suspensions, by 32%; and vandalism, by 18% (King 32). With student violence constantly making the headlines, the search for solutions continues. Safety in school today is essential for both students and administrators, so creating an environment that reduces incidents of intimidation and violence is necessary for students to learn effectively. Designer clothes and shoes have been cause of school violence. "In 1996, a Detroit 6th grader was killed for his $86 pair of tennis shoes" (Wilkins 19).