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AIBU to think that girl's school shoes should be enclosed?

(127 Posts)
jwpetal Tue 02-Sep-14 18:05:54

sorry this is long but My daughters are starting reception on Thursday and I took them to get new school shoes. I went to Clarks who did not have any enclosed shoes for girls. They did have a new shoe for older children but not for young children. Apparently, parents do ask for this but they do not supply them. I looked at numerous stores and could not find them except for Little Kickers that I might get away with but massively expensive.

Now, the boys have enclosed shoes but not girls. Winter is coming and the kids will spend a lot of time outside in rain, puddles and the cold. When I asked about this (I grew up in the desert), a young girl next to me said that her feet get wet and cold but they are also not allowed to wear boots. She was buying the new Clarks enclosed shoe for older kids. Her mother was surprised as she had not thought of it. Her brother said that his feet stayed dry....except when he jumps in a big puddle.

Am i being unreasonable, to find the policy of no boots rule unreasonable and also the lack of supply to girls for warm, comfortable, enclosed school shoes ridiculous?

VivaLeBeaver Tue 02-Sep-14 18:12:50

Ime if its raining you walk them to school in wellies. They change into shoes at school and aren't allowed out to play if its raining.

They do have these which are the most enclosed and they're the same style I wore to school 30 odd years ago.

Dd had the more open ones with the one horizontal strap across. Don't think she ever had wet feet as she always took wellies with her if raining.

JohnCusacksWife Tue 02-Sep-14 18:22:09

My girls both wear the Mary Jane style. Don't have wet feet as they wear wellies or boots to school if it's really wet. Have never heard of a "no boot" rule. Also, at our school, if it's pouring at break time the kids don't go out. I wouldn't stress about it.

hettie Tue 02-Sep-14 18:23:36

Couldn't agree more, my dd starts reception this, year too and this has given me the rage. My active climbing running dd is supposed to mince about in slip on style or open fronted Mary janes whilst ds gets practical dry footwear. I visited 3 shoe shops before resorting to ordering online from La redoute (obviously French girls climb and run hmm). It sends subtle but inherently sexist messages about how little girls are expected to play and behave....angry

Catmint Tue 02-Sep-14 18:25:05

Yanbu. Drives me mad.

M & S had some kicker style ones which we have got this year.

Stuffofawesome Tue 02-Sep-14 18:25:22

Yanbu. Dd in yr 4 and finally managed to find enclosed shoes at geox

Vicky5910 Tue 02-Sep-14 18:29:08

YANBU! Girls shoes are stupid and impractical. If my girl wants to run and play and walk outside after it's been raining she should have the option of footware to do that in!

Holly McNish just released a great spoken word on this topic!

OddBoots Tue 02-Sep-14 18:30:47

yanbu, dd ended up wearing boys shoes as she was fed up of getting wet feet on the walk home and didn't want to carry wellies every day just in case. The boys ones also had better grips for climbing and walking on frosty pavements. She's wearing Kickers these days.

jwpetal Tue 02-Sep-14 18:31:45

thank you Hettie, I will look at La redoute and I am glad I am not alone.

It was mentioned that we should take wellies to school but I haven't, yet, had to do that with my son and the only reason I would have to do this with my daughters is because we couldn't by enclosed shoes for them. I also want them to run and jump and not worry about puddles. Even when not raining the play area has many many puddles.

I'll ask about the no boot rule at school. I did find it a bit strange.

littlejohnnydory Tue 02-Sep-14 18:31:53

Yanbu. Ever since dd could walk, she has worn the Clark's gore Tex lined boots. We walk everywhere as I don't drive and her feet have always been dry, plus the boots have stood up to endless climbing, running and playing. Not sure why she can't wear a dark pair for school?

jwpetal Tue 02-Sep-14 18:34:29

sorry just saw the other! I am so glad I posted. I checked out the M&S shoes but her feet are very narrow and they swallowed her feet. I'll check out the boy collection and see what I can get.

BornToFolk Tue 02-Sep-14 18:35:41

YANBU. I took DS to get his school shoes on Sat and was browsing while we waited and was very shocked that all the girls shoes were Mary Jane style.

The contrast between boys's shoes (sturdy, fully enclosed, thick straps) and girls' shoes (flimsy, thin sole, thin straps) was incredible.

FuriouslyFrottingFerret Tue 02-Sep-14 18:36:16

I agree, our school doesn't like children wearing proper boots to school as they struggle to sit comfortably on the carpet in them which is fair enough. I think the Kickers style ones are the nicest and most practical.

NoodleOodle Tue 02-Sep-14 18:36:54

Yanbu. My DD wore boys' shoes for two years of middle school because the pathetic construction of those designed for girls would have restricted her play. As a pp has noted, girls' shoe design reinforces sexist expectations of their behaviour.

MamaPain Tue 02-Sep-14 18:38:28

Has their school definitely got a no boot rule? My DD always wears boots in the cold and rain. Her other shoes are mary-jane style but are just as suitable for running around in.

BikeRunSki Tue 02-Sep-14 18:44:23

Even at 2 I nearly always buy dd "boys" shoes, although she has had kicker ankle boots and doodle converse style shoes in pink. She was gutted that the shop didn't have the kickers in her size in red!

EatDessertFirst Tue 02-Sep-14 18:50:10

The Clarks 'Mary-Jane' style have always lasted well and been practical for my running, jumping, climbing stuff DD. I don't see how shoe style can dictate how little girls must behave!? I think some people are far too offended by percieved gender stereotypes. As pointed out by PP, its the norm to have wellies in school for wet playtimes isn't it??

Optimist1 Tue 02-Sep-14 18:57:00

A little bit off-topic, but I remember hearing a very interesting discussion on Woman's Hour a few years ago about girls and sport. Someone was suggesting that the reason a lot of girls are less active than their male counterparts is that their footwear isn't suitable for running, jumping, etc. She told listeners to look at the footwear being worn by boys and girls going to and from school - I was staggered when I did this; the number of girls (primary age) wearing flimsy, slip-on, "fashion" shoes was considerable, whilst virtually all the boys wore sturdy ready-for-action footwear.

Parietal Tue 02-Sep-14 19:14:02

Agree that lots of girls shoes are much to flimsy for proper play. Maybe we need to petition Clarks to add tougher girls shoes. I think there is a letshoesbeshoes group on twitter like lettoysbetoys ?

HappyAgainOneDay Tue 02-Sep-14 19:22:42

After the petition about Clarks' instore posters (something about girls being pretty and boys being adventurous), is there any point in starting a petition about this?

Just boycott the rubbish, flimsy, unsuitable-for-winter shoes and buy from shops that produce equal value for all children whatever gender they might be. Lots of suggestions on here for girls' shoes that will withstanding cold weather and a bit of rough walking.

Sirzy Tue 02-Sep-14 19:23:36

Girls school shoes all seem to be designed for summer. Boys for winter.

Monopolice Tue 02-Sep-14 19:23:54

I managed to get DD some Ricosta ones that were like the Clarks two-velcro strap ones, but in the shiniest patent leather. She's only ever had Mary Janes before and has constantly whinged about them. Her little face lit up, and she said "these are just like my pumps but black shock" - my DS though has never had to wear anything other than his pumps but black hmm

gentlehoney Tue 02-Sep-14 19:25:45

Optimist, I agree with this. I think it is horrible that so many shoes have pointy toes and heels even in the styles described as "for school"

marne2 Tue 02-Sep-14 19:26:55

I hate clarks shoes, I buy dd1 the boys shoes as they are better fitting, the girls shoes seem to be getting worse every year, some have a slight heal on them and they are not a very supportive fit.

amy83firsttimer Tue 02-Sep-14 19:29:28

I just used to wear "boy's" shoes. Shoes don't have willy / no willy differences in the cut of the garment. They are for feet!!!!!!!!

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