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Whenever a school considers adopting a school uniform policy, the question, “How do we go about it?” always comes up. A Roselle Park, New Jersey, school district got the ball rolling with a series of public hearings. State law actually requires public schools to hold a hearing when considering a uniform policy.
The hearing proved an excellent way to approach the subject. Parents were able to come and give input and hear what others were thinking. For those opposed to the introduction of a school uniform policy, concerns ranged from the cost of the uniforms to the issue of whether school uniform policy, now adopted mostly by inner city school districts, is appropriate for a middle-income town like Roselle Park.
Among other reasons, parents who favored school uniforms said uniforms help instill discipline and level the playing field for all students. It was difficult to gauge from reactions at the hearing which side in the debate had overwhelming support, but a survey of parents showed more people supported the introduction of uniforms than those opposed to it.
An important element of the discussion was a review of other districts that have adopted uniform policies, what their reasons were, and what their experience has been. Getting parents involved from the start and learning from school uniform (www.hallclosetuniforms.com) experts are two elements that always ease the process.
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