Does your school’s required uniform put your families under financial pressure and give mixed messages about the spirit of equality? Fiona Aubrey-Smith and Emma Goto investigate

As your children returned to school this September you will have no doubt watched them pour into your classrooms full of anticipation wearing their fresh new school uniforms. However, there are many issues surrounding uniforms on which it is healthy to reflect at this time of year.

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) review of research evidence found that “there is no robust evidence that introducing a school uniform will, by itself, improve academic performance, behaviour, or attendance” (EEF, 2019).

But from a leadership and governance perspective there is still a strong case for children to be in school uniform. Advocates argue that standardised clothing is a great leveller and plays a vital role in social equality – removing indicators of family income or lifestyle choices.

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