As a child I went to private Catholic Schools my entire life until my senior year. My senior year, I moved to Pennsylvania and went to a public school. In a private school, we were required to wear uniforms. On our way to school, some took a public transportation, some were dropped off by their parents and others drove their own cars. My first few days in the school, I noticed that some students wore different colors and some even wore their own polo shirts. I later learned that freshman and sophomore students wore blue sweaters, juniors wore red sweaters, and seniors wore white cardigans and their own polo shirts. Everyone wanted to wear their own casual outfits, which were only a luxury granted on dress down day or on the occasional day where you were allowed to donate a dollar to be able to dress down.
As an adult I now understand that the school was trying to not separate students based on their status. According to Penn State, “individual differences are almost exactly what they sound like: the particular aspects of people that make them different from other people (2019).” Even as a kid I noticed this, subconsciously. I did not understand why and what the differences I was noticing at first. Even though we mostly wore uniforms, wealth and status were still shown in other ways. Aside from being a to schools in the UK where high schools banned Canada Goose and Moncler jackets (John, 2018). According to High school bans Canada Goose and Moncler jackets to protect poorer children,they want to limit the inequality between the disadvantaged students, so this does not stigmatize the students and affect the student’s performance (John, 2018). This also sounds very similar to my school also having limited the days they are allowed to dress down.
I understand that being bullied will have a great effect on children especially in the years they are still trying to figure out who they are. Schools want to ensure that students only have to worry about learning and building their intelligence, which Penn State describes as how effective someone is when performing activities that require thought (2019). According to John, teachers avoid asking how student’s weekends were to avoid having poorer students called out for not being able to afford to do something on the weekends. As Penn State notes, the biodata and the differences from your background like your race, where you were born and the family you were born into has a huge effect on your entire life. As my school tried to unify its students within a dress code, there were a few ways the wealthy would be able to show their status. Some were able to afford expensive shoes, cars, jewelry, ties, newest phones and backpacks, just a few of ways they could stand out.
I understand that this practice. This is definitely necessary being that some people may not want to be shunned just because of their status. This only perpetuates the justice that kids face every day. As students learning should be the most important thing on their mind. Students as well as their parents should not have to worry about how they appear to other students based on their looks or what they have.
John, Tara. “High School Bans Canada Goose and Moncler Jackets to Protect Poorer Children.” CNN. November 17, 2018. Accessed March 21, 2019. https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/16/uk/poverty-proof-school-gbr-scli-intl/index.html.
Penn State. (2019) Lesson 8: Individual Differences. Retrieved from