Say No to School Uniforms!
Period 1 ILA
Just say NO to uniforms! In the past few years, more and more schools have been requiring their students to wear uniforms. As many as one in eight American public schools have been implementing this policy. While there are many advocates for the continuous usage of school uniforms. The First Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees that all individuals have the right to express themselves freely. The US Supreme Court stated in Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District (7-2, 1969) that “it can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate.”
Clothing choices are “a crucial form of self-expression,” according to the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada, which also stated that “allowing students to choose their clothing is an empowering message from the schools that a student is a maturing person who is entitled to the most basic self-determination.” Clothing is also a popular means of expressing support for various social causes and compulsory uniforms largely remove that option. In Oct. 2013, students at Friendly High School in Prince George’s County, MD, were not allowed to wear pink shirts to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month. As a result, 75 students received in-school suspensions for breaking the school’s uniform restrictions! How could such a good cause to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month and then have students be suspended for just spreading the love? If one or two students wear something inappropriate, administration will handle it. The student in question will change, be disciplined, and return to class without disrupting the school day. [South Carolina] Rep. McKnight’s [mandatory uniform] policy would trigger massive backlash from students, and would cost countless hours of classroom instruction. Public schools already have dress codes which ban provocative, revealing, gang-affiliated, and hateful clothing, which addresses Rep. Why don’t we execute school uniforms, that way students won’t have to constantly be pulled aside and criticized for violation of the dress code! Finally, students will have freedom and can express themselves. So say NO to school uniforms!