An Idea From a Uniform Wearing Girl

As a student at a private school, I wear a uniform every day. In the morning I spend almost no time picking out what to wear, and I do not have to think about what is currently trendy or popular. It is quick, simple, and easy.

No longer do I spend money on expensive trendy clothes to wear to school every day. Now I just purchase a few weekend and church outfits. Although many believe that wearing school uniforms causes loss of self expression and individuality; I think it solves many social and financial dilemmas. Self expression is a very important component in today’s high school life. Expressing one’s self and one’s opinions determines who students will be friends with, what social clubs they will join, what classes, and what path they will take in life. Many think that this is done by the clothes that are worn; however, expressing one’s self should be about personality rather than outward appearance.

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It would be naive to say that people do not notice how one dresses, but the real focus should be put one’s on opinions and beliefs. Therefore, wearing uniforms should not make a bit of difference on a student’s self expression. Students should still be perfectly capable of voicing their opinions equally whether wearing a uniform or wearing an outfit of his or her choice. The loss of self expression in clothes also brings out an advantage: students can find other ways to express themselves. Wearing uniforms forces students to step out of their comfort zone and think of creative ways to express themselves rather than through clothes. So, even though students lose self expression through their clothing it can still be seen through their personalities and other creative ways they find to express themselves.

People, especially high school students, put a lot of emphasis on clothing. Students must have the latest designer brands and styles. For example, in the movie Mean Girls, to be part of the cool group of kids, the girls must wear pink on Wednesdays and jeans on Fridays, while not repeating an outfit. Although this happened in a movie it happens in reality too; however, it may not be quite as obvious. The fashion rules in reality may just be understood, but none-the-less they are there.

Because of this, uniforms in high school are advantageous. They force people to get to know the person in the clothes rather than automatically write him or her off because he or she is wearing the wrong kind of shirt. School uniforms can cause not only a loss of exclusivity and cliques, but also a loss of understood boundaries and fashion rules. This also allows for a much more pleasant high school experience overall because there is no longer a need to buy clothes that will make one fit in. Many times the clothes that high school students consider trendy and fashionable also come with a high price tag.

So, to fit in, students not only need to buy these expensive clothes, but they also have to buy many different outfits in order not to be an “outfit repeater” as Lizzie McGuire was called in her junior high school days. Clothing costs add up quickly, so it can be very hard for someone to fit in based on clothes, especially on a low budget. This is another reason why school uniforms are so effective. A student’s family could choose to buy only one or two bottoms and shirts, and the student will not be chastised an “outfit repeater” as was Lizzy McGuire. Therefore, students no longer have to be judged on their outfits, but rather on their personalities. Uniforms allow students to get to know each other by who they are rather than by what they wear.

Although it causes some loss of self expression, it brings to light new ways to express one’s self. As a uniform-wearing high school student, I wholeheartedly agree that wearing uniforms is a positive thing. Finding the latest fashions and coolest styles can be challenging, especially since my family pays to put two children through private schools. Uniforms are the perfect way to get students to focus on the personalities of others rather than on their outfits.