Parents should closely read the Aug. 15 article, “School uniforms being mulled,” before being polled to adopt uniforms for K - 5!
First, outgoing Bladen County School Board member John Clark III states uniforms “will prevent kids from battling to out-dress each other,” and a uniform “prevents students from wearing something that might be considered offensive.”
I assert both are attributed to a lack of parental involvement and should not be the responsibility of, or at the expense of, taxpayers.
Bladen County School System Student Discipline Code states the following:
• “The school system is not responsible for teaching discipline standards to students.”
• “Clothing... cannot be provocative, revealing, indecent, vulgar or obscene.”
• “It is the responsibility of the parents/guardians to insure that their children exhibit acceptable behavior.”
To get mom/dad involved, call them up a couple of times at their job to bring “Junior” a change of clothes!
Second, Public Relations Director Valerie Newton states, “We’ve not had any discipline problems or academic problems that are occurring due to how the students are dressing.” In addition, she says, “I think they are looking at it more for financial reasons as a way to help the parents.”
These are interesting statements.
Here’s what I concluded after reading the article:
1. The school board is considering school uniforms for fifth graders and under. The uniform consideration is for financial reasons as a way to help the parents. Are they the same ones funding the clothing wars?
2. There has not been an discipline or academic problems occurring due to student dress. Then why is the school board considering uniforms?
3. Instead of enforcing existing dress rules, the school board is pondering mandatory uniforms, supplemental uniform funding and how they would “handle students whose families refuse to comply.” Why not handle the ones who are currently violating the dress code?
School board, wake up! The parents who are buying the clothes, which allow the clothing wars and the wearing of offensive material, need to be held accountable. Don’t mandate a uniform requirement on everyone else because of their lack of parenting. Enforce the dress codes that are already written. Don’t force the rest of us to pay for someone else’s poor parenting skills.
However, if you do mandate a uniform, you should fund everyone’s uniforms!
Lt. Col., USAF, Retired