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Mumsnet School Uniform campaign.

(106 Posts)

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lagoonhaze Sat 07-Sep-13 08:20:04

There have been several threads recently which have highlighted the increasing problem where schools have the monopoly on school uniforms by insisting on expensive logo uniform or restricting parents to expensive suppliers.

Last year the Office for fair trading wrote to head teachers but it appears to have been largely ignored.

www.oft.gov.uk/OFTwork/markets-work/othermarketswork/school-uniforms#.UirSMOpwbIU

There is also no legislation that regulates school uniform only non statutory guidance.

education.gov.uk/schools/leadership/schoolethos/b0014144/schooluniform

I suggest a campaign whether Mumsnetters lobby for fairer school uniform for all and remove the financial burden many parents and carers have every year.

I'd be interested in seeing if there is support for this and whether MNHQ are prepared to put their weight behind this.

BTW I don't have this issue at the moment but I think as its such a growing national problem it something we can all consider a potential problem for all of us at some point in the future.

CouthyMow Sat 18-Jan-14 22:57:51

DD and DS1 attend a state Secondary Academy. (It wasn't an Academy until April last year, DD is in Y11).

For an example of ludicrous uniform costs we have a sole, online only supplier.

A clip on (only clip on sold) tie costs £7.99 with postage. Ditto a pair of house PE socks - and they no longer put siblings in the same house, so no passing down.

Boys rugby top for PE - £18.99 with postage.

Girl's PE sweatshirt - £16.99 with postage.

Horrid polyester jumper, V-neck with embroidered stripes on neckline so that you can't buy from anywhere else - £17.99 with postage.

School badge to sew onto blazer - £7.99 with postage.

School skirt, bloody white tartan kilt thing (!) - £21.99 EACH with postage. (I thank god DD wears trousers!)

Then there is the fact that School Polo's are the (now obligatory) summer uniform. They fade really badly, as they are black, so can't be used for more than one summer term, and are embroidered with the school logo AND have red bits on the edge of the collar, no way you could replicate them! £13.99 EACH, with postage. I have two to get for this Summer term.

Yes, the white shirt, black trousers and black blazer can come from anywhere, but seriously?! This is a state school.

And DS3's primary school is no better. £25 for a compulsory fucking polyester PE tracksuit plus £3.50 postage?! THEN another £9.50 for a two pack of PE shorts in a shade of blue you can't buy in any supermarket, again £3.50 postage. Plus the PE T-shirt, £7.50 for two embroidered polyester offerings.

Polo tops MUST be embroidered. So that's another £13.50 for a two pack. (Can be bought plain white for £4 for two in Tesco in my DS2's size, and he's tall!)

Then school sweatshirts at £11.50 each with postageUntil the largest, 11-12 size, which DS2 is in in Y5, which are then £13.50 each.

Yes, all the tops I've had to pay an extra £2 per pack for, as DS2 has a very long body. Goodness knows what I'm meant to do for Y6!

It's a rip off. But the DC's get crests in Secondary and dragons in Primary if they are always in full uniform. Which means that everyone knows if you are NOT in uniform.

It's divisive and discriminatory to those that can't afford this. I spend more on each DC's school uniform than I do on my own adult clothes. It's ridiculous.

Oh - and the Secondary used to have an open day at the end if term where you could buy the uniform without the postage costs. They didn't do one this year, since becoming an Academy. angry

Schooluniformretailer Wed 22-Jan-14 12:18:02

Hi All

I am a school uniform retailer and have been for 28 years.

I can fully understand some of your frustrations. If you have any questions regarding uniform I am more than happy to answer them for you and I will be open and honest. Maybe it will help you understand how the industry works and take some of those frustrations away.

Speak soon

Jon

checkmates Sat 01-Feb-14 11:48:07

Some uniform deals done between suppliers and schools seem wrong to me. The uniform rules must NOT punish poorer parents. It needs seriously looking at

FiveExclamations Sat 03-May-14 20:33:16

Apologies for dragging out an almost zombied thread but I've just had the "welcoming your child to our High School" letter and forms.

I knew they'd changed the trousers for the 2014 intake from basic Supermarket to only one style, exclusively available from the website, but now there is also a compulsory, snazzy, shiny and be-loged P.E. kit that is going to set me back £35 more than last years options.

Other than undies, footwear and coat every single thing DD will wear at High School can only be brought from the online school shop.

Do schools simply ignore the DOE guidance? "The school uniform should be easily available for parents to purchase and schools should seek to select items that can be purchased cheaply, for example in a supermarket or other good value shop. Schools should keep compulsory branded items to a minimum and avoid specifying expensive items of uniform eg expensive outdoor coats."

taken from DOE advice here

I will go check out the CAB campaign, but I wanted to rant too. Dear rulers of Mumsnet, I know your burdens are heavy, but when you've kicked Bounty out of maternity wards could you have another think about this?

zebarella Tue 20-May-14 14:32:12

We fully support this idea, it creates increase financial pressure on parents when school monopolise the market with their own branded uniform.

MissBeeDee Tue 20-May-14 22:32:08

It's funny I found this, I have only just joined this website and this is one of the first things I see. I have 2 children in school, ages 4 and 6. The school sell the uniforms on site. The uniform consists of a school logo polo shirt, a grey skirt/trousers, a school jumper/cardigan, a school bag and a school PE kit. Altogether, to clothe both of my children will cost me £70, not including the skirt/trousers, shoes or new coats. However, the school have decided they do not want to provide the uniforms anymore and now we must go to a specialist uniform shop where they have put all the prices up, meaning that I need to pay just over £100 for 4 t'shirts, 2 cardigans, 2 jumpers, 2 bags and 2 PE kits. Our family doesn't have a lot of money although we work. I think it is disgusting that parents have to pay that kind of money on a uniform when you can get a full uniform from Asda for a lot less. I want to complain to the councellors about this but I'm not sure how I do it. Does anybody have any ideas?

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