Parents Victoria believes a student's attendance at school is the highest priority (as agreed by the government) and so uniform should never be an inhibitor or barrier. With the ever increasing costs of schooling to families (school fees, transport, books, technology, excursions, subject costs, etc) there is no need for schools to add to this pressure by insisting on a specifically branded uniform.
School Councils have the right to set the school's uniform policy and should be aware of their communities and should consult with students and parents on what is a practical and affordable uniform policy. Why should parents be asked to pay upwards of $20 for a polo shirt with the school's logo on it when they can buy a plain polo from a retail store for $2.00. Surely a better option would be to offer iron-on logos if the school insists on a logo at all. In particular, the requirement to purchase a specific type of pant, puts untold financial pressure on families. Why do pants need to have logos? Restricting the purchase of uniform to that approved by the school also does not impact positively on students' body image. Being bigger or smaller than others means the clothes may not fit well.
Several public schools have recently moved away from the more 'casual' uniform of polo shirts to 'business' style shirts, often along with ties and/or blazers. Schools sometimes view this as their opportunity to appear like private schools. We don't believe that is a relevant or necessarily even a good aspiration for students. Parents Victoria believes schools would be better served to retain an affordable uniform and spare parents this unnecessary expense, allowing parents to put the money towards other educational necessities, or even family necessities. Having a strict uniform policy also requires strict enforcement. The time required to do this consistently and fairly is wasted and could be better used as teaching time. As per our policy below, we believe "No child should be barred from school activities, or punished, for being out of school uniform."
Parents Victoria Policy:
P.1 School Uniform
School Council has the right to decide, in conjunction with Parent Club and Student Representative Council, on the composition of a school uniform, and to encourage the wearing of it.
No child should be barred from school activities, or punished, for being out of school uniform