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Is there ANY proven correlation between school uniform and performance?

(573 Posts)
Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:11:46

Any data (either way) anywhere?

Fairylea Thu 02-May-13 09:14:40

Regardless of that though isn't school uniform also to do with poorer parents being able to buy cheap school wear rather than feeling the need to compete if dc were allowed to wear their own stuff? I'm half asleep and not wording it very eloquently but I do think that's part of the reason we keep it.

ryanboy Thu 02-May-13 09:14:52

The purpose of school uniform is not to improve academic performnce

quoteunquote Thu 02-May-13 09:18:40

no it about controlling what children wear.

Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:19:03

I know that ryanboy.

I didn't ask if it was.

I want to know if there is any proven data about it either way.

indyandlara Thu 02-May-13 09:20:53

Or stopping the constant pressure to have the latest gear for school, which hen gets trashed causing upset and more expense. Can't see why people get their knickers in such a twist about uniform.

LaundryLegoLunch Thu 02-May-13 09:21:15

I'd be interested in this. My dc's school has no uniform and although I like the individuality it promotes, it's quite expensive as casual trousers and shoes never last as long as school versions. The school has a new head starting in Sep and I'm sure that this will be a hot topic for them...

RooneyMara Thu 02-May-13 09:21:57

Everyone knows who the poor kids are regardless. It's obvious. I loathe uniform.

In answer to the OP no I don't know Hully. Interested to find out though.

Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:22:29

I don't care what anyone thinks about uniform, just want to know about data.

Haberdashery Thu 02-May-13 09:23:25

The research quoted by the Sutton Trust (that uniform is among the least effective ways of improving a school) seems to have been carried out at Durham University. Not sure who by or where you could see the original research, though.

Haberdashery Thu 02-May-13 09:23:43

Sorry. Link:

Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:24:07

Thank you, Haberdashery. I'll have a look.

RooneyMara Thu 02-May-13 09:25:03

we have a drawer full of normal clothes that are wasted as ds wears the horrible aertex that never stays white more than a week, the nasty polyester jumper with logo that is compulsory and costs 9 quid a go, and the trousers that are (finally) cotton which took me ages to find, and now have holes in the knees. The polyester trousers dig into his stomach and leave a deep mark..uniform is hideous and my children look FAR nicer on a weekend in their ordinary clothes. No one can tell our class status when they wear their own clothes.

Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:25:33

So Sutton Trust says "no robust evidence"

SanityClause Thu 02-May-13 09:25:40

I have no problem with school uniform, as I think its just easier to have. Children (particularly teenagers) don't need to worry whether their clothes will be socially acceptable, and parents don't have to fork out for expensive Hollister hoodies for every day of the week. (And what are Hollister hoodies if not a uniform - if we didn't have one for them, they'd invent it themselves!)

However, I don't really understand hairstyle rules. At DD1's school, they can dye their hair any colour, so long as it's a natural hair colour. DD1 asked whether I thought a black girl at the school would be allowed to bleach her hair blonde. My thought is that if a white girl with blonde hair can dye her hair black, then the school would be on fairly shaky ground saying the black girl couldn't bleach hers.

So, in that case, why not let them have blue hair? Or green, or pink? The blonde girl who has dyed her hair black is going to have obviously dyed hair. So why not let them dye it blue, which is also obviously dyed?

RevoltingPeasant Thu 02-May-13 09:26:03

Hully I don't have any data but grew up in the US where uniforms are rare. Several people in my year still managed to go to Harvard and comparable places.

I seriously doubt there is any link.

RooneyMara Thu 02-May-13 09:26:04

Oh sorry. will bugger off then.

Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:27:48

Why Rooney?

RooneyMara Thu 02-May-13 09:28:24

giving opinions!

LeaveTheBastid Thu 02-May-13 09:29:15

Is there a reason you ask hullygully?

I don't think there can be any solid evidence that it improves anything, way too many other factors that would affect the results for anybody to be albe to say that uniform alone is responsible for increased classroom performance.

thebody Thu 02-May-13 09:31:17

Hate hate hate school uniform.

Complete waste of bloody money and as a TA in reception I can spend far too much time trying to find cardigans and pe kits that all look the bloody same.

As a parent I hate it as I have always encouraged my 4 to be individuals and really enjoy the phases of 'goth' lasted 3 weeks oldest ds etc.

It doesn't improve standards and its expensive.

lisson Thu 02-May-13 09:31:50

you may want to google "David Brunsma school uniform" as its the only research done, and it says it has no impact on performance. However, the author was prejudiced before he undertook the research and it was in the US, so that may undermine the study's conclusions and their extrapolation to our culture.

Personally, I think its a good idea. For the poor kids (and their parents), for the promotion of belonging and school pride and for the general idea that you are there to work, rather like the same reason men wear a suit and tie to the office but not during leisure time.

schoolgovernor Thu 02-May-13 09:32:42

There is a correlation between introducing school uniform and improving behaviour, and then you can expect that improved behaviour will result in increased attainment and accelerated progress (and accelerated progress is what it's all about these days).
I have been a governor on an Interim Executive Board in a school where behaviour had been completely out of control. One of the measures introduced by the new leadership was to introduce school uniform, and surprisingly maybe, the students gave positive feedback about how it made them feel. You would need to see the development plan for a particular school, which would include the outcomes they expected to see from introducing uniform, and the longer term evaluation. Certainly in the school I am thinking of we were satisfied that introducing uniform was one of the positive changes that turned things around for those boys and girls.
This might wind a few people up, but I think that some parents (not saying this is you Op!) need to just stop worrying about petty things like uniform and support the schools that their children attend. If there is a uniform - get behind the school and have your children wear it. You've got a chance to buy an economical set of clothing for your kids to wear at school and no messing. I get intensely aggravated by parents who are constantly supporting their children in ways to dodge around wearing the approve uniform to school. Who exactly needs to grow up in that scenario?
The argument is sometimes about expense of a particular item, or sourcing, but most schools will be willing to enter into a sensible discussion about that and consider alternatives suggested.
Just put the children in the uniform, get them to school, and then turn your attention to the more important issue of how they are actually getting on when they go in the gates every day. wink

Hullygully Thu 02-May-13 09:33:21

for the promotion of belonging and school pride and for the general idea that you are there to work, rather like the same reason men wear a suit and tie to the office but not during leisure time.

Does it work for that? Is there evidence?

RooneyMara Thu 02-May-13 09:33:31

Those are the reasons I hate it Lisson.

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