Schools uniforms in India are an essential part of a child’s education and they are becoming ever so important as students are becoming increasingly conscious of their looks and appearance from an early age. Schools uniforms in India are beneficial in many ways however they have a few negative aspects as well. Most schools have insisted on school uniforms in India and there are several different types of uniforms that can be seen through the extent of the country. Generally, schools in the northern part of the country have separate summer, winter and sports uniforms, whereas most schools in the south have just one main uniform. In a country like India where the economic divide is much larger than that in western countries, school uniforms are considered to be essential. Many academics argue that the benefits of school uniforms far outweigh the cons but there are always two sides of a coin.
The main argument for the importance of schools uniforms is the concept of uniformity. As previously mentioned the economic divide in India is vast and in most schools people from different walks of life can be seen. School uniforms are the medium through which children are united and a sense of oneness is achieved. Students are not conscious about what others are wearing and minority students who might not be able to afford expensive clothes are not neglected. Such a situation is prevalent in many western schools and eliminating this aspect is one of the main benefits of having a standardized uniform. Students, especially teenagers tend to judge a person by the brand of clothes they are wearing and school uniforms in India serve to remove this type of mind-set. Uniforms also instill a sense of school spirit and lack of discrimination leads to solidarity between people from different religions, caste, culture and creed. Also another important factor is that schools uniforms that are provided by the schools tend to reduce the expenses for the parents and this is essential in most public schools and also in a few private schools where children might demand expensive shoes and other such accessories. Schools that insist on canvas shoes eliminate the prospect of students haggling with parents for expensive and flashy shoes and other allied accessories. Many schools in India have banned jewelry altogether, except basic earrings for girls.
On the flip side, opponents believe uniforms squash creativity and free expression and worry that they could prevent students from expressing their religious or political beliefs. In most western countries schools uniforms are not compulsory and the primary reasoning behind this is the fact that uniforms restrict the children from expressing themselves. Many academics argue that school uniforms are constricting children from being themselves and this is becoming increasingly relevant in India, especially in high profile schools. Dressing is considered to be an important way to express oneself and different children dress differently and uniforms are restricting this aspect. This is especially true for girls as they grow up with an unbalanced sense of dressing up. Individuality is something that should be encouraged and schools uniforms in India hamper this aspect of growing up. Students believe that schools uniforms generally have limited sense of style and they could be a source of embarrassment for students.
School uniforms in India are essential, especially in the smaller cities and towns of the country. They fulfill many important functions and they allow parents to get some breathing space. It promotes a sense of togetherness, which is essential to promote racial harmony and communal harmony in the society. School uniforms in India are still the popular choice and most schools will insist on this for a long time in the future as well.