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Shoes and Dress Code in School

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Shoes and Dress Code in School

James Owens, Student

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Many students in school are required to wear specific kinds of clothes and shoes in school. This can cause them to feel less independent, and can cause problems later in life such as lack of confidence and decision making. Most private schools have these rules in place, and this is a problem. Children and especially teenagers, need to have enough separation from what is considered to “fit in” to make sure they can be decisive, independent, and confident adults. Without the freedom to wear what they want to express–while still being appropriate for school–will cause the future generations to not be as outgoing and confident and they could be.

Voicing his concerns about school uniforms, Chicago junior high school student Kyler Sumter, in a February 17, 2014 article in Huffington Post wrote,”They decide to teach us about people like Rosa Parks, Susan B. Anthony and Booker T. Washington… We learn about how these people expressed themselves and conquered and we can’t even express ourselves in the hallways.”

A few private schools have requirements for shoes. This can present a few problems too. While having to wear the same kind of shoes might not have as much of an effect as clothes, it still causes problems, especially for students with foot problems. Many people all around the world suffer from things like tendinitis in their feet. Tendinitis is especially common in teenagers because it is caused by overstressing the tendon in the foot. There are solutions, like getting custom made insoles for shoes, but many dress shoes that are required at school do not fit the insoles. This means that students with this problem can be in pain because of the damage being done to their feet.

Most students in school support the idea of free dress, or at least a fair dress code. There aren’t many problems with this idea either. Countless studies have shown that uniforms don’t improve grades or student happiness in any way. Studies have shown that uniforms have a negative effect in these areas. Many students in schools without uniforms, are almost always happier, more independent, and confident with themselves.

In fact, an October, 2018 article on ProCon.org referred to a statement on the subject by the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada: “Clothing choices are “a crucial form of self-expression,…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.” It stands to reason that students who feel empowered, independent, and free to express themselves, will be happier and confident.

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