Peta Todd on the importance of school uniform to prevent kids bullying each other

Peta Todd on the importance of school uniform to prevent kids bullying each other

But no matter how unstylish it was, at least my peers and I all looked the same. The only things we could switch up were our shoes and bags.

I vividly remember trying to persuade my mum to buy me Kickers or Patrick Cox shoes, as they were THE ones to have.

But my begging came to nothing as my mum handed me the Freemans catalogue to pick some shoes from – my trotters are only a size six, but were size four when aged about seven.

This week, Education Secretary Damian Hinds backed schools that enforce strict school-uniform policies – including for shoes – in a bid to stop “footwear competitiveness”.

I fully support this. It’s so sad that children are being bullied because they don’t have the latest designer trainers or expensive backpacks.

Social media is more powerful than ever and the pressure on our children to have all the latest gear is already sky-high. Surely, creating an environment where they are all equal can only be a good thing?

My daughter’s school go one step further – all pupils have to wear school coats, gloves, scarves, bags and even the same colour hair bands.

Not only do they all always look impeccable, they are all the same.

The full lot probably costs roughly £50 to £60, so pretty competitive with the high street – but all from selected uniform shops, in our case.

Nobody wants a glittery, levitating unicorn backpack because Jilly Frilly Knickers in their class has one, or those flipping shoes with a “gift” in the sole either.

Some people feel like this is all a step too far and almost turning our little people into small soldiers.

I understand that, in real life, jealously, greed and keeping up with the Joneses are all very real – but do we really need these negative feelings distracting our children at school?

Last month, a school was in the news for banning Moncler and Canada Goose coats, to prevent bullying and exclusion among pupils. Some of these coats can cost £1,000.

The pressure on children and parents can be alleviated – it doesn’t need to happen.  I’m sure some of you reading this will be thinking that this is all a bit “generation snowflake” and that “in our day” we just got on with it.

That is true, to a degree, but the game has changed since I was at school. Instagram is now a portal into the realm of false, materialistic ideals.

If we can support our schools and protect our children in this basic way, why wouldn’t we?

Parenting is all about shortcuts – and a uniform is up there with the best of them.

Source: Read Full Article