A Sea of Gray | Teen Ink

A Sea of Gray MAG

By Anonymous

     Entering school, I am lost in a sea of navy blue, white, and gray. We look like a school of drab fish that are stuck in a rain cloud. I constantly ask myself why our school makes us wear uniforms. It causes a hassle for parents and students, and it does not keep kids from being teased.

I go to a school where we have to wear uniforms, and everyone, including teachers, believes it is unfair. Think about it: Not only do students have to buy school clothes, but they also have to buy regular clothes to wear outside of school too. For families with limited resources, this is a real problem - they regularly must replace not one but two wardrobes for their child who has outgrown his clothes. Every year, it is a bother to scour the stores that carry good quality uniforms. For example, a single uniform shirt from L.L. Bean costs a minimum of $20. A normal back-to-school shopping trip is often double the price, and many agree 10 times the trouble.

As a teenager, you can see why I am upset. It’s simply not fair to go to school in the same dreary colors every day when other students are able to wear stylish, colorful clothes. Even though I don’t agree with the usual “It ruins people’s creativity” argument, it is boring to see other kids wearing the exact same thing as you. Since it is possible to buy uniforms from different places, people are still made fun of for having a Wal-Mart uniform versus an Abercrombie & Fitch one. This may sound selfish, but it is troubling when you want to be a unique individual.

Why do school officials ignore these things? I don’t know anyone (except parents) who like the idea of uniforms. I’ve never met anyone who said, “Oh, yay! I get to go to a school where students wear uniforms!”

If the point of uniforms is so students dress appropriately, how about a stricter dress code instead of resorting to being monochromatic? All I want to know is why people think uniforms are a good idea. They are expensive, unfair, and time-consuming. Maybe our unfairly uniformed children will grow up to be principals and presidents of school boards so they can abolish this practice.

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This article has 3 comments.

i love this so much!

mkg1102 said...
on Nov. 13 2013 at 1:21 pm
I totally disagree. I went to a high school that had uniforms and I loved it. The uniforms were actually one of the reasons I chose my high school. It saved me a ton of time in the morning because all I had to do was grab a pair of tights, put on a white polo or button-down, and pull on my skirt. Shoes and accessories were open to student choice. I don't think there is an obvious difference between a white shirt from Wal-Mart as opposed to Abercrombie. Because one has a stupid moose? I also didn't find it to be any more expensive. In fact, I found the uniforms to cost less in the long run. I bought maybe 6 skirts in my 4 years and I didn't need many different shirts either. You go to school 5 days out of 7, so your 2-day weekend wardrobe honestly shouldn't kill your budget. The only thing I really had to buy a lot of were tights because they'd rip. Uniforms weren't boring to me. They made school comfortable. I didn't have to stress to figure out an outfit in the morning. I do think that your school should make changes though. It doesn't really make sense to have a uniform if the uniform is essentially just "Wear blue pants and white shirts." There are too many variations of that combination. It opens the door for judgment, inequality, stress, etc. and undermines the whole point of school uniforms. I wore my uniform with pride and, to be honest, even missed it when I went to college.

musicgirl757 said...
on Oct. 4 2008 at 7:44 pm
THANK YOU! someone finally gets it! hopefully this will help...